Fishing vessel safely towed to Seward following grounding in Prince William Sound

Coast Guard Alaska NewsVALDEZ, Alaska – Coast Guard personnel from Marine Safety Unit Valdez responded Wednesday to a fishing vessel grounded on a reef in Saw Mill Bay.

The fishing vessel Randi Lynn, an 82-foot wooden hulled fishing tender, grounded on Tuesday while entering Saw Mill Bay to deliver mail and supplies to the fishing vessels working in the area. No injuries were reported. Minor flooding of the engine room resulted from the hull damage, however Randi Lynn’s dewatering pumps combined with pumps from another vessel, were able to keep up with the incoming water.

With the help of another fishing vessel, the Randi Lynn moved to a mooring buoy near Chenega to provide easier access for divers assessing fractures to the vessel’s hull. Divers applied wedges, butyl rubber caulking, and lagged on replacement plywood patches as a temporary repair.

While the incident happened Tuesday, the Coast Guard was not notified until Wednesday morning. Marine inspections and pollution investigations personnel from Marine Safety Unit Valdez deployed to the area to assess the environmental impact of the grounding and inspect temporary repairs to the tender.

“Our inspectors responded to the area to ensure the safety of the environment, the crew and the vessel,” said Lt. Cmdr. Danielle Wiley, MSU Valdez Chief of Prevention. “Due to the sensitive nature of Prince William Sound and a nearby fish hatchery, we directed the deployment of boom to contain any fuel released during the incident. Our personnel inspected temporary repairs and authorized the Randi Lynn to depart for Seward to affect permanent repairs.”

There were no reported signs of damage to the vessel’s fuel tanks, and a minor sheen within the boom around the vessel was determined to be from the engine room dewatering efforts. At the time of the grounding, Randi Lynn was carrying 4,000 gallons of fuel on board.

Fishing vessel Kaylor T towed Randi Lynn to Seward, arriving safely on Thursday morning.

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