Sept. 20 Aleutian Isle Update: Vessel moved to shallower Mitchell Bay, dewatering and rerigging underway
On Monday, September 19, the Aleutian Isle - the fishing vessel that sank near Sunset Point off San Juan Island on August 13 - was moved to shallower water in Mitchell Bay. Crews successfully connected the Aleutian Isle to the side of the barge before transporting it. The vessel is partially floating and supported by the barge crane.
Crane, tug and barge September 20, 2022. Canada Dept. of Fisheries and Oceans photo
At its new location it is easier to completely defuel, dewater and re-rig the Aleutian Isle in preparation to be lifted onto a barge. The depth of the area allows divers to work longer and safer. The area also allows all the operations to be surrounded by boom to reduce the risk of sheen moving away.
A crewmember pumps fuel off the Aleutian Isle, and into a tote 9/20/22. U.S. Coast Guard photo
After the crane barge was secured, crews were able to remove 300 gallons of oily-water mix before operations ended for the day. A new safety zone was established around the new work area with a 150-yard radius that is in place until Sept. 26.
Crews work aboard the Aleutian Isle September 20, 2022. U.S. Coast Guard photo.
On Tuesday, operations continued to remove trapped fuel and water. Crews also began re-rigging the vessel in preparation to lift it onto a barge in the next day or two where it will be transported to an on-shore facility.
Wildlife crews are continuing bird deterrence efforts and assessing areas for any wildlife impacts. The whale deterrence team remains on standby in case killer whale deterrence is necessary.
Wildlife response vessels off San Juan Island September 19, 2022. Soundwatch photo
An Oikoma pipe is handed over.
On Monday evening, wildlife response crews did take deterrent action on two transient killer whales when they were close to the operations area at Lime Kiln. Those crews used oikomi pipes to move the whales out of the area and stayed with the whales until they were beyond the incident area. Deterrence teams remain onsite and on standby during operations to deter any whales in the vicinity of the response.
An incident-specific web page has been created by the Washington Department of Ecology. Additional photos of the response can be found on Flickr. Developing updates will also be posted periodically on the U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Northwest social media accounts listed below.
- March 2: FV Aleutian Isle Response: Challenges and Opportunities - Special meeting in Friday Harbor
- Sept 22: Aleutian Isle no longer significant threat to environment in the San Juan Islands
- Sept. 21 Update: Aleutian Isle on barge, 40 days after sinking to 200-foot depth
- Update 10: Further Aleutian Isle lifting operations postponed due to weight
- Aleutian Isle successfully raised to surface; no whales in area
- Lifting of the Aleutian Isle underway
- UPDATE 9: Final preparations underway for lifting fishing vessel Aleutian Isle
- Sept. 12 Update: Aleutian Isle recovery efforts
- Sept 9 Update: Rigging Aleutian Isle for lift will take a few more days
- Sept. 4 Update Aleutian Isle: Wreck cleared of entanglements; rigging begun
- Sept. 2 Aleutian Isle Update: All valves and vents closed off by divers
- Sept. 1: Divers removing netting from wreck of Aleutian Isle
- Aleutian Isle lying on starboard side 200 ft down; TFR extended to Oct. 15
- Boaters asked to abide by safety zone restrictions near wreck site
- Aleutian Isle incident: Equipment on site, recovery will take 10 days once started
- U.S. and Canadian crews conduct transboundary whale deterrents drill
- August 25 Update: No sheen observed
- UPDATE #7: Efforts to bring sunken fishing boat up expected to begin Friday
- IOSA survey to gauge potential IOSA responder availability
- County Council met with response team last week; recording available
- Update 6: Specialized diving equipment will take a few days to arrive
- Coast Guard plans to remove entire FV Aleutian Isle from ocean floor
- 10 years ago, SeaDoc Society created a plan used today to keep orcas out of an oil spill
- Coast Guard Update 4: No marine, terrestrial, or airborne wildlife appear to have been affected
- Coast Guard Update 3: Depth of sunken boat increases difficulty for divers, ROV brought in, nets recovered
- Coast Guard Monday evening Update: Boat now in 200 ft of water
- Coast Guard, partner agencies respond to pollution incident after fishing vessel sinks off San Juan Island
- August 13: An "epic" encounter with J, K, and L pods
- Coast Guard Update: Divers on scene assessing possible defueling of sunken fishing boat
- Sunday evening update from Coast Guard about sunken fishing boat
- Opportunity lost
- San Juan County's view of diesel/oil spill situation
- Hotline to report sighting of oiled wildlife - 1-800-22-BIRDS.
- Coast Guard update on diesel/oil spill off of San Juan Island
- Diesel/oil spill off Sunset Point west side of San Juan Island