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Diesel Release from Sunk Tug Vessel; Steamboat Slough, Bethel, AK

Steamboat Slough, Bethel, AK, USA | 2023-Nov-02

Initial Notification: On October 30, 2023, at approximately 1500 local time, a sheen was reported on the Kuskokwim River by a Bethel Search and Rescue team member. The sheen was traced back to the partially submerged Vitus owned tug vessel Francis Snow which was grounded in Steamboat Slough off of the Kuskokwim River. The vessel sank due to a crack in the hull and has a max fuel capacity of 2,500 gallons, but it is estimated that only 250-300 gallons of diesel were aboard. The incident location is just incident EPA jurisdiction and they are currently the FOSC, however USCG jurisdiction is downstream and they are monitoring the situation. The source has been secured and the vessel was refloated on 31-OCT. NOAA acting AK SSC was not notified directly by EPA, but has been included on email traffic and invited to meetings for water sampling collection.

Incident Details
Primary threat:Oil
Products of concern:diesel
Total amount at risk of spill: 300 gallons
Latitude (approximate): 60° 47.18′ North
Longitude (approximate): 161° 41.96′ West