Towing Vessel Sinks Near New Orleans

March 11, 2013

The Coast Guard says it has deployed boom and is monitoring the spot where a towing vessel sank in the Mississippi River near New Orleans.

The Coast Guard was notified Thursday around 2 a.m. that the 56-foot towing vessel Justice sank. Three people aboard the boat were able to get off before it sank. No injuries were reported.

Mckinney Salvage and Heavy Lift Inc., of Baton Rouge, are scheduled to arrive at the scene later Friday and commence salvage operations of the vessel, the Coast Guard said.

The boat had 5,336 gallons of diesel fuel and 100 gallons of lube oil aboard. The actual amount of fuel discharged into the river is not known, however the Coast Guard said sheen has been spotted in the area.

So far there’s been no impact on the river bank. Water intakes are being monitored but the Coast Guard says it is not expecting any effect on drinking water.

Divers were able to plug the fuel vents Thursday, the Coast Guard said.

Vessel traffic on the river has not been affected.

The Coast Guard is investigating the cause of the incident.

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