Coast Guard works to remove fuel from grounded fishing vessel off Treasure Island, Fla

TREASURE ISLAND, Fla. – The Coast Guard and pollution response contractors worked Thursday to remove diesel fuel from the 34-foot fishing vessel Lily Anne after it ran aground Sunday, west of John’s Pass in Treasure Island.

After a Coast Guard boatcrew responded to the grounded vessel Sunday evening and determined no injuries were incurred, Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg pollution responders directed the owner of the vessel, Lucian Zaleski of Largo, Fla., to have an estimated 200 to 300 gallons of diesel fuel aboard the vessel removed in order to prevent pollution.

After a commercial salvage company hired by Zaleski was unable to refloat the vessel Tuesday, and a commercial pollution response company’s removal estimate was cited as too expensive by Zaleski, the Coast Guard stepped in to federalize the pollution removal portion of the case.

The Coast Guard has contracted the pollution response company Progressive Environmental Services to remove the fuel, and Sector St. Petersburg marine safety officers are overseeing the response. Operations were delayed Wednesday due to inclement weather but have continued Thursday.

Pollution and marine casualty investigations are being conducted by Coast Guard St. Petersburg Prevention Department.

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