Coast Guard responds to vessel aground on Columbia River sand bar

The 608-foot container ship Genco Auvergne ran aground in the Columbia River near Skamokawa Vista Park, Washington, Oct. 1, 2020. The vessel was re-floated at high tide with the aid of three tugboats: Carolyn Dorothy, Samantha S., and Willamette. (U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of Sector Columbia River)

The 608-foot container ship Genco Auvergne ran aground in the Columbia River near Skamokawa Vista Park, Washington, Oct. 1, 2020.  (U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of Sector Columbia River)

ASTORIA, Ore.— The Coast Guard is responding to the 608-foot container ship Genco Auvergne that ran aground Thursday on the Washington side of the Columbia River south of Skamokawa Vista Park.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Columbia River received a report at 12:50 a.m. that the Genco Auvergne had run soft aground due to a loss of main engine propulsion while transiting down the Columbia River.

The tug vessels Carolyn Dorothy, Samantha S. and Willamette were on scene to assist. The captain of the Genco Auvergne reported no injuries or pollution.

The Marshall Islands-flagged vessel was reported to be carrying grain and approximately 616,644 gallons of fuel oil.

The Coast Guard dispatched a marine inspector from Sector Columbia River and a Columbia River Bar Pilot is aboard Genco Auvergne coordinating vessel traffic through the area.

The vessel is constructed with a double hull and regular soundings are being taken to monitor fuel-tank levels.

“We have great coordination with the vessel agents, class society, river pilots, flag state and port partners,” said Capt. Gretchen Bailey, deputy commander at Sector Columbia River. “The implementation of the non-tank vessel response plan mitigated the impacts of the incident and will assist in the expedited re-floating of the vessel.”

The vessel was re-floated at 2:20 p.m. during high tide and continued transiting to Longview, Washington.

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