Coast Guard, Wash. Dept of Ecology respond to vessels in Hylebos Waterway

13th Coast Guard District NewsSEATTLE — The Coast Guard and Washington Department of Ecology are responding to two vessels moored at Mason Marina on the Hylebos Waterway near Tacoma, Wash., Thursday.

The Coast Guard received a request from the Wash. Dept. of Natural Resources on Feb. 22nd to conduct an assessment of the Golden West and Helena Star. The vessels are listing five to 20 degrees, in very poor condition and reportedly abandoned by their owners.

The Coast Guard dispatched a pollution response team and vessel inspector to conduct inspections of the vessels Wednesday.

Coast Guard and Ecology found that the Golden West was taking on water with approximately 20,000 gallons of oil on board and a strong odor of ammonia. Contracted divers are currently patching the vessel. Helena Star has oil in the engine room, buckets of oil throughout the vessel and has partially flooded with rain water due to hatches being left open.

Global Diving and Salvage, and National Response Center have been hired through the Coast Guard’s Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act to conduct preventative measures.

No pollution has been found in the waterway and oil containment boom has been placed around both vessels. Coast Guard, Ecology and contractors will remain on scene to coordinate cleanup efforts.

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