Process continues for removal of vessels displaced in Puerto Rico by Hurricane Maria

U.S. Coast Guard Lieutenant Commander Lee Trevino (second from right) reviews the vessel identification process to Nilda Jiminez (center in group), Department of Natural and Environmental Resources Incident Commander for Maria ESF-10 PR, before affixing a sticker to an impacted vessel in Ponce, Puerto Rico, Oct. 28 2017. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Thomas McKenzie

U.S. Coast Guard Lieutenant Commander Lee Trevino (second from right) reviews the vessel identification process to Nilda Jiminez (center in group), Department of Natural and Environmental Resources Incident Commander for Maria ESF-10 PR, before affixing a sticker to an impacted vessel in Ponce, Puerto Rico, Oct. 28 2017. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Thomas McKenzie

SAN JUAN – Vessel removal operations continue in Puerto Rico as part of Hurricane Maria recovery efforts.

As part of the unified recovery effort, assessment teams continue to identify vessels in need of assistance.

Officials are requesting owners of vessels, with a warning sticker affixed to their vessel, to call (786) 521-3900. Vessel owners should call this hotline to report a vessel removal plan, to request support to remove a vessel, or to report a vessel has already been removed.

Vessel owners are highly encouraged to call the hotline to receive information on vessel removal options. There is no cost, penalty or fine associated with working with the unified command to remove vessels.

To date the unified effort has identified 351 vessels in need of assistance, placed assistance stickers on 221 vessels, closed 131 cases, made contact with 121 owners and responded to 31 reports of vessel pollution.

The Department of Natural and Environmental Resources and the U.S. Coast Guard in conjunction with the Puerto Rico Environmental Quality Control Board, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service stood up the ESF 10 command post in Puerto Rico, with the mission of overseeing the assessment, mitigation and removal of hazardous substances and vessels from Puerto Rico’s ports and waterways in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.

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