MSU Galveston oversees salvage operation of the UTV Jerry Picton

HOUSTON — Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Galveston is currently overseeing the salvage operation of the 40-foot, 25 gross ton Uninspected Towing Vessel Jerry Picton, Thursday, in the vicinity of Pier 21 in the Port of Galveston.

Salvage operations are currently underway to recover the Jerry Picton, which sank in approximately 40 feet of water in the Port of Galveston after a crane boom fell onto the vessel, Wednesday. Divers from T&T Marine Salvage will be placing straps around the vessel in an effort to lift the vessel out of the water. Once the Jerry Picton is lifted, fuel will be removed from the vessel, and the vessel will then be taken to a local shipyard for repair.

At approximately 3:45 p.m. Wednesday, a crane from the Mobile Offshore Drilling Unit Ocean Star failed while transferring a skid pan to the UTV Jerry Picton. This apparently caused the crane boom from the Ocean Star to fall onto the Jerry Picton, ultimately sinking the vessel.

There have been no reports of any injuries.

Following the Jerry Picton’s sinking, the vessel was reported to be resting on the bed of the Port of Galveston with approximately 1,800 gallons of diesel fuel and 100 gallons of crude oil on board.

T&T Marine Salvage and MSU Galveston personnel responded in less than 30-minutes, placing approximately 500-feet of hard boom around the vessel. Divers then secured the fuel vents. Currently, there is a light sheen on the water’s surface contained within the boom.

“We immediately responded to this incident. There has been minimal environmental impact and the Coast Guard will continue to monitor this situation until salvage operations are complete,” said Cmdr. Jim Elliott, commanding officer of MSU Galveston.

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