The F/V American Way. USCG Photo
The salvage of the
fishing vessel "American Way" has begun. The Coast Guard is reporting that the
Unalaska- based salvage vessel "Redeemer" arrived at Aghiyuk Island
at 1 a.m. this (Thursday) morning to begin an assessment of the situation.
The American Way was
intentionally grounded by its two-man crew on Sunday afternoon around 3
o'clock, after its engine died and the boat began to ice up. The 38-foot
fishing boat was on its way from Kodiak to Chignik when the incident happened.
After grounding, skipper Jim Brewer and crewman Jay Kingsley took an inflatable
ashore, started a fire for warmth and called the Coast Guard on their satellite
phone. A helicopter from Air Station Kodiak, about 200 miles northeast, arrived
three hours later and hoisted them aboard. They were delivered in good
condition to Chignik on the Alaska, about 60 miles away.
The salvagers from
Magone Marine will submit a salvage plan for review and approval to the Coast
Guard. The American Way is partially submerged and listing to port, just off
the rocky beach of the small and uninhabited Aghiyuk Island.
A Coast Guard C-130
overflight on Tuesday spotted a thin diesel fuel sheen extending a couple
hundred yards from the American Way, but by Wednesday it had dissipated through
evaporation and wave action. The overflights showed a number of items had been
washed from the deck, including boxes and line.
The Alaska Department of
Environmental Conservation and the U.S. Department of the Interior are also
monitoring the situation through Coast Guard reports in regards to potential
pollution. The American Way had approximately 600 gallons of diesel in the fuel
tank and about 200 gallons stored in drums on deck.