Coast Guard responds to grounded fishing vessel off Kewalo Basin in Honolulu

HONOLULU — U.S. Coast Guard pollution investigators are monitoring a 54-foot fishing vessel that ran aground on a reef near Kewalo Basin, Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2009.

The fishing vessel Logan was reported aground to the Coast Guard at 7:45 a.m., Wednesday, as it attempted to transit from Honolulu Harbor to Kewalo Basin.

Coast Guard crews aboard two small boats — a 47-foot motor lifeboat and 25-foot response boat — were launched immediately from Honolulu Harbor to monitor the situation and ensure mariner safety in the area.

The Coast Guard has established a safety zone in the area and requests mariners maintain 75 yards distance from the grounded vessel. The Coast Guard also asks ocean users to be aware of the safety zone, which may be monitored by a Coast Guard small boat.

The Coast Guard is advising Kewalo Basin users and nearby boat traffic of the safety zone via VHF marine band radio channel 16.

"We are confident the situation is stable and there is no threat to the environment right now," said Cmdr. Amy Cocanour, chief of response for Coast Guard Sector Honolulu. "A clean-up organization has been hired and the process of removing the fuel from the vessel is going smoothly."

Cocanour and other Coast Guard personnel were on scene throughout the day to monitor the situation. The Coast Guard is also working closely with the state's Department of Land and Natural Resources to ensure safety for all mariners in the area.

Also responding to the incident were officers with the DLNR's Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation, a DLNR reef specialist, the State of Hawaii Department of Health's Office of Hazard and Emergency Response, the Honolulu Fire Department and U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers.

The vessel owner has hired clean-up and salvage contractors and the Coast Guard and state expect to approve a plan that calls for the removal of the vessel from the reef at high tide Thursday morning.

Approximately 600 gallons of marine diesel fuel was reported aboard and is being removed this afternoon. Coast Guard investigators went aboard the grounded vessel this morning to ensure it was safe enough to be towed off the reef.

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