Coast Guard Detains Ship in Seward for Safety Violations

Monday, January 13, 2003
The Coast Guard detained the Arctic Transport in Seward Wednesday for five safety violations. Tom Rebar, skipper of the Arctic Transport, informed the Coast Guard Monday that the 203-foot ship was experiencing engine problems. The vessel departed Seattle days earlier and was in the Gulf of Alaska when it experienced engine problems and flooding. The Coast Guard cutter Mustang responded to the stricken vessel and escorted it to Seward at 6 a.m. Tuesday. Inspectors from the Coast Guard Marine Safety Office in Anchorage went to Seward Wednesday to perform a safety inspection on the ship. The inspection revealed uncontrolled flooding into a ballast tank, uncontrolled flooding around the port and starboard rudders, a hole in the wall between the engine room and cargo hold, the starboard generator has an unexplained seawater leak, and the ship has an unexplained starboard list. The Coast Guard Captain of the Port for Western Alaska, Capt. Ron Morris, issued an order for the Arctic Transport to remain in Seward until all the discrepancies are corrected to his satisfaction. Failure to abide by this order can result in civil and criminal penalties. “I am aware that the ship was transporting goods to some of the Aleutian communities but I could not, in good conscience, allow that ship to continue sailing,” said Morris. “There are five lives at stake on that ship.”

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