ESF-10 Unified Command oversees removal of displaced vessel at Rachel Carson Reserve

Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Seth Grayson, a marine science technician assigned to Marine Safety Unit Portland, Ore., hands a pen to Paula Gillikin, a natural resources manager with the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, to document the transfer of a houseboat that was displaced onto land at the Rachel Carson Reserve, a dedicated nature preserve, back into shallow water for future removal, Carteret County, N.C., Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018. The ESF-10 Unified Command, comprised of the U.S. Coast Guard, North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, and North Carolina DEQ, collaborated with salvage contractor Resolve Marine Group and multiple assisting agencies to mitigate pollution from sunken or displaced vessels in fragile environmental areas after Hurricane Florence. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Brandon Hillard)

Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Seth Grayson, a marine science technician assigned to Marine Safety Unit Portland, Ore., and Paula Gillikin, a natural resources manager with the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, document the transfer of a houseboat that was displaced onto land at the Rachel Carson Reserve, a dedicated nature preserve, back into shallow water for future removal,  Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.  (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Brandon Hillard)

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — The ESF-10 Unified Command coordinated the pollution mitigation of a displaced houseboat from the Rachel Carson Reserve in Carteret County on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.

The ESF-10 Unified Command collaborated with salvage contractor Resolve Marine Group to facilitate an effective method for extracting the houseboat and minimizing the damage to the reserve’s fragile marsh habitat. Utilizing state of the art technology and multiagency cooperation, the houseboat was mitigated of pollution, relocated off of Town Marsh and transported to the adjacent shallow waters of Taylor’s Creek. The houseboat has been staged for future removal from the area.

“Secretary Regan and I are very grateful to ESF-10 Unified Command for their work in helping the state with vessels stranded during Hurricane Florence,” said John Nicholson, Chief Deputy Secretary of North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality. ” This response effort is leveraging significant federal resources, and protecting our state’s coastal resources, including habitats at the Rachel Carson Reserve.”

The Rachel Carson Reserve, a component of the N.C. Coastal Reserve and National Estuarine Research Reserve and a dedicated nature preserve, is a complex of islands located in an estuarine system where both fresh and saltwater mix. The reserve includes 2,315 acres, supporting a variety of plants and animals including feral horses.

The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality and U.S. Coast Guard, which make up the ESF-10 Unified Command, have been working with the Resolve Marine Group and supporting agencies such as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, to systematically mitigate pollution threats from vessels that were displaced or sunken in the major disaster-declared counties after Hurricane Florence.

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