Salvage complete for grounded tour boat

9th Coast Guard District NewsCLEVELAND – A salvage company contracted by the vessel’s owner removed the tour boat Pictured Rocks Tuesday evening from a beach near Empire, Mich., where it has remained since the boat ran aground Monday evening.

The boat was freed at about 5 p.m. after the operator of an excavator dug around it to allow water to reach it, and a tugboat pulled it free from behind.

It was towed to the vessel owner’s facility in Frankfort, Mich., where it can be repaired. A Coast Guard inspection must be completed prior to the vessel being authorized to continue operating as a tour boat in Lake Michigan.

“The vessel’s crew, Coast Guard assets, and local responders did an excellent job getting everyone off the vessel following this serious marine incident,” said Lt. Cmdr. Sean Brady, commanding officer of Coast Guard Sector Field Office Grand Haven, Mich.

“We appreciate the proactive stance of the company to salvage their vessel, and cooperation exhibited by the National Park Service, Luedke Marine, and other participants. Everyone’s willingness to work together facilitated the rapid progress of the evolution, and had a direct impact in preventing potential environmental issues.”

There have been no reports of pollution as a result of this incident. The incident is under investigation by the Coast Guard; the cause is unknown at this time.

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