Marine Link
Sunday, October 22, 2017

Grounded Bulker Suffered Major Hull Damage

March 23, 2016

Sparna reportedly briefly ran aground while transiting the Columbia River near Cathlamet, Wash., March 21, 2016. The vessel is safely anchored, and is maintaining position, with the assistance of two tugs, as an approved salvage and repair plan is developed. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Levi Read)

Sparna reportedly briefly ran aground while transiting the Columbia River near Cathlamet, Wash., March 21, 2016. The vessel is safely anchored, and is maintaining position, with the assistance of two tugs, as an approved salvage and repair plan is developed. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Levi Read)

A damage assessment revealed significant damage to the motor vessel Sparna, which ran aground Monday in the main shipping channel of the Columbia River near Cathlamet, Wash.

The damage assessment showed multiple fractures were found, the largest being a 25-foot by 5-foot wide fracture with a visible boulder lodged inside. Damage to the Sparna was contained to two flooded compartments.

The assessment was submitted to the U.S. Coast Guard by Ballard Marine Construction early Tuesday morning and was shared with both Washington and Oregon state responders. 

The Coast Guard, alongside state pollution responders, and a contracted oil spill response organization, continue to monitor the M/V Sparna. There still have been no signs of oil or fuel spilled during the incident.

A unified command under the supervision of the Captain of the Port intends to move the vessel upriver to the Port of Longview Wednesday morning, as conditions permit.

“The cooperation between federal and state representatives continues to ensure the safety of the environment and the safety of the crew aboard the motor vessel Sparna,” said Capt. Dan Travers, commander Coast Guard Sector Columbia River. “Although there has been no pollution aspect to this point, we have prepared and have people in place to respond to the worst case scenario.”

A Coast Guard overflight Monday confirmed no pollution. Another overflight is scheduled for Wednesday.

Two tug boats – the PJ Brix and Pacific Escort remain on scene with the Sparna to help maintain its position. The Columbia River waterway remains open to all traffic, but the Captain of the Port may need to limit deep-draft commercial traffic once the Sparna begins its transit up river for repair.

The Sparna is fully loaded with grain in its cargo holds, and is carrying 218,380 gallons of high sulfur fuel and 39,380 gallons of marine diesel.

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