Coast Guard escorts Husky II to Homer for disassembly

KODIAK, Alaska – Coast Guard and Coast Guard Auxiliary escorted the 158-foot Husky II towed by the motor vessel Cinmar from Seldovia to Homer May 12.

Upon arrival in Homer the vessel was moored to the barge Heavy Hauler and 180-feet of containment boom was deployed around the vessel as a precaution. The Husky II is scheduled to be disassembled and recycled by a Homer-based contractor. The Husky II is a World War II era troop transport vessel built in 1944 that spent four decades in Alaskan waters.

The vessel had been moored in Seldovia for over six years and was determined to be an imminent threat to the environment and public health and welfare following a visit from Coast Guard inspectors in early December 2008.

Coast Guard and members of Alaska Chadux began clean-up operations on the Husky II January 2009 in Seldovia after the Coast Guard assumed responsibility for the clean-up operations when the owner failed to comply with a letter from the Coast Guard issued Dec. 22, 2008. The letter notified the owner of the need to boom off the vessel as a precaution and to conduct a thorough removal of oils and hazardous materials.

When the owner did not comply with the requirements, the Coast Guard, in the best interest of the community and the environment, contracted with Seldovia Oil Spill Team to place containment boom in place and monitor the boom daily. Around 38,800 gallons of diesel and water mixture, hydraulic oil and lubricating fluids and about 1,000 gallons of hazardous waste to include solvents, various containers holding unknown liquids and marine batteries were removed from the vessel leaving only residue. The degraded structure of the vessel prevented further cleaning.

The City of Seldovia took ownership of the vessel after it was cleaned and made arrangements for its transfer to Homer for disassembly.

The clean-up was funded out of the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund established by Oil Pollution Act of 1990. Total clean-up costs are estimated at $765,906. The total cost of the clean-up can possibly be recovered through pursuit of civil penalties against the vessel owner for up to three times the total costs incurred.

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