Coast Guard oversees cleanup operations for sunken fishing vessel in Seward, Alaska

JUNEAU, Alaska – The Coast Guard has assumed responsibility of cleanup efforts for fuel released by the fishing vessel Nordic Viking that sank in Seward Harbor, Sunday.

The Coast Guard opened the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund and Alaska Chadux has been contracted as the Oil Spill Removal Organization. The Nordic Viking’s hull tanks can hold 2,500 gallons of fuel but the responsible party estimated approximately 700 gallons were in the tanks at the time of the sinking.

The responsible party has contracted Storm Chasers Marine Services Inc., to salvage the 71-foot Nordic Viking. Storm Chasers divers have plugged the fuel vents.

“The Coast Guard’s main objective is to limit environmental impacts through the containment and cleanup of the release as quickly and efficiently as possible,” said Capt. Sean MacKenzie, commander of Coast Guard Sector Anchorage. “We are working diligently with Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation and contracted agencies to minimize the impact of this release.”

Currently, sheening can be observed 1.5 miles south from the incident site. Light sheen has also been observed in Scheffler Creek and lagoon.

At this time the cause of the sinking is unknown. No hazards to wildlife or further discharge have been reported.

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