Coast Guard Sector Juneau, Contractors Recover Submerged Tugboat

A partially submerged tugboat in Juneau, Alaska. Photo: U.S. Coast Guard.

A partly submerged tugboat at the National Guard Dock in Gastineau Channel, Alaska has been recovered, the U.S. Coast Guard revealed on Feb. 28.

The Coast Guard contracted salvage firm Melino’s Marine Services to remove the tug by using a barge-and-crane system from Bellingham, Wash.

After recovery of the tugboat Tagish, the vessel was secured on the beach at the guard’s dock in Gastineau Channel on Feb. 19, according to the Coast Guard. Contractors then dewatered and defueled the 107-foot tugboat prior to it being dismantled and placed on a barge for final disposal out-of-state.

“The Coast Guard’s mission during this recovery was to maximize maritime environmental protection where the tugboat was submerged,” the Guard said in a statement.

The tug had been partly submerged with an oil sheen since at least Dec. 29 when Coast Guard Sector Juneau first received word of the problem. The Coast Guard, city and borough of Juneau and Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation responded to the incident.

“The cooperative efforts from federal, state and local entities in mitigating the risks to the environment were key to the success of this event,” Sector Juneau Commanding Officer Capt. Darwin Jensen said.