Coast Guard responding to disabled tug and barge with 2.5 Million gallons of diesel fuel on board

Coast Guard District 17 NewsJUNEAU, Alaska — The Coast Guard is responding to a disabled 95-foot commercial tug reportedly carrying more than 2.5 million gallons of fuel 24 miles southwest of Cape Fairweather Sunday.

Coast Guard Sector Juneau watchstanders were alerted that the tug Nathan E. Stewart had reportedly suffered a failure with its starboard engine, leaving the vessel with reduced power and drifting to the northwest at 2 mph. The tug is pushing a 287-foot barge carrying a reported 2.5 million gallons of diesel fuel and 1,000 gallons of jet fuel on board.

The disabled tug and barge are not in immediate danger of running aground, however, the Coast Guard Cutter Anacapa, a 110-foot patrol boat, and the Coast Guard Cutter Maple, a 225-foot buoy tender, have diverted to assess the situation and assist the stricken tug as needed.

The commercial tug Le Cheval Rouge has departed Hawk Inlet and is anticipated to arrive on scene to assist the Stewart at 4 a.m. Monday.

“We are closely monitoring the situation with our state, industry and tribal partners and have dispatched Coast Guard units to the area to assist,” said Capt. Scott Bornemann, Coast Guard Sector Juneau commanding officer.

The tug Stewart crew was heading from Valdez to Skagway when they reportedly experienced the engine failure.

Weather on scene is reported as winds of more than 45 mph and 12-16 foot seas.

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