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Barge sinks, leaks fuel near San Francisco Bay Bridge (UPDATE)

Apr 7, 2017 02:16 PM

The 112-foot Vengeance settles on the sea floor above the subterranean BART tube

Courtesy U.S. Coast Guard

The following is the text of a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard:

(SAN FRANCISCO) —  A collaborative unified command has been established, comprised of the U.S. Coast Guard, California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Office of Spill Prevention and Response, San Francisco Department of Emergency Management, Vortex Marine Construction and Bay Area Rapid Transit District, in response to the sunken 112-foot freight barge Vengeance near the Bay Bridge and has worked with contractors to determine Monday that the barge's location poses no threat to the Bay Area Rapid Transit District TransBay Tube or salvage operations. 

The barge has settled on the sea floor above the subterranean BART tube, which is sheltered by a 25-to-30-foot protective layer of earth consisting of compacted sediment. Regular sonar scans and tube inspections are being conducted to ensure the BART tube is not impacted and that BART remains safe to operate. 

Global Diving & Salvage has been hired by the barge owner, Vortex Marine Construction, to conduct underwater assessments and devise a salvage plan. The unified command will review the salvage plan before salvage operations begin to ensure it can be conducted safely and efficiently. 

A Coast Guard helicopter crew conducted an overflight Sunday and detected no sheen. Responders remain on scene prepared to deploy boom.

Coast Guard Station San Francisco crews are enforcing a safety zone in the area to ensure the safety of responders. Watch standers at Coast Guard Sector San Francisco have issued a safety marine information broadcast to local mariners.

Shoreline teams have also been deployed throughout the surrounding areas to conduct shoreline assessments to the outlining areas and monitor wildlife. While no impact to the shoreline has been detected, the responding agencies continue to prioritize and prepare for potential impacts to environmentally sensitive sites.

No visibly oiled wildlife has been reported or observed at this time, but crews are monitoring for them. Anyone seeing oiled wildlife should not attempt to capture them but should report the sightings to 1-877-UCD-OWCN.

All agencies are working together to develop a salvage plan, to ensure safety and effectiveness and to mitigate any environmental impacts. 

PREVIOUS REPORT

(SAN FRANCISCO) — The Coast Guard and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Office of Spill Prevention and Response are responding to the report of the capsized and sunken 112-foot freight barge Vengeance leaking diesel fuel and hydraulic oil south of the Bay Bridge on Friday.

Coast Guard responders and investigators are on site executing cleanup strategies for a maximum potential release of 4,000 gallons of diesel fuel and 300 gallons of lube oil.

National Response Corp. emergency services personnel have been contracted to deploy 3,000 feet of hard boom.

Coast Guard Station San Francisco crews are enforcing a safety zone in the area to ensure the safety of responders. Watch standers at Coast Guard Sector San Francisco have issued a safety marine information broadcast to local mariners.

No shoreline or wildlife impact has been reported.

A Coast Guard Air Station San Francisco helicopter crew is conducting an overflight of the area.

The owners of the sunken barge have contracted Global Diving & Salvage to assess the salvage response and environmental impact. 

The Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund has been opened for $50,000 for pollution mitigation.

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