Coast Guard, Puerto Rico Ports Authority clean pollution threat in San Juan Harbor

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – Coast Guard pollution response teams and Puerto Rico Ports Authority personnel are conducting cleanup operations with Clean Harbors oil waste disposal crews at Pier 15 here Thursday, to remove more than 20,000 gallons of oily water waste onboard the derelict tug vessel Tracy 1.

“If not disposed of correctly, this vessel could pose a threat to the environment,” said Chief Petty Officer Mark Senna, Federal On-Scene Coordinator Representative. “The Coast Guard and the Puerto Rico Ports Authority are working aggressively to safeguard the environment by removing this pollution threat as soon as possible from the San Juan Harbor.”

“We are committed with the cleanup operations taking place at Pier 15 as well as any other initiative that contributes to reducing environmental hazards in our Island’s ports and airports,” said Álvaro Pilar Vilagrán, Puerto Rico Ports Authority’s Executive Director.

Once cleanup operations onboard the abandoned tug vessel are completed, the Puerto Rico Ports Authority will assume responsibility for the final removal and disposition of the Tracy 1.

Since cleanup operations began Tuesday, Clean Harbors oil waste disposal crews have removed more than 16,500 gallons of oily water from the Tracy 1. Following the removal of all the oily water waste, cleanup crews will continue to remove all remaining residual oil sludge and oil pollutants from the derelict vessel.

Coast Guard pollution investigators estimate clean up operations aboard the Tracy 1 will take at least four days to complete and will cost approximately $25,000.

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