SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


Tanker Seabulk Pride Runs Aground, No Injuries
Tug boats Help Refloat Grounded Tanker


February 03, 2006

Three tug boats helped to pull a grounded fuel tanker off a beach on the Kenai Peninsula this morning, one day after an ice floe pulled the tanker from its mooring and sent it adrift. The refloating of the tanker Seabulk Pride took about 40 minutes, according to Unified Command. The refloating was timed to coincide with high tide in the Cook Inlet.

The tugs pulled the tanker into deeper water where it will be inspected thoroughly, but there was no indication the ship had leaked any fuel while hard aground on the beach.

jpg Tanker Seabulk Pride

The oil tanker Seabulk Pride grounded a half a mile north of Kenai Pipeline Dock in Nikiski Thursday after heavy ice flow caused it to break free from its moorings at 5:25 a.m.
Unified Command photo by Petty Officer Christopher McLaughlin

According to Unified Command, the oil tanker tanker was moored at the Kenai Pipeline Dock (KPL) and was struck by an ice flow Thursday morning causing it to break free from its moorings at 5:25 a.m. The mooring line parted causing the vessel to drift northward and go aground approximately 1/2 mile north of the KPL dock.

A Unified Command consisting of Tesoro, the U.S. Coast Guard and the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation is in place to handle the East Forelands Incident, pertaining to the tanker Seabulk Pride.

At present, the crew and pilots remain on board the vessel. There have been no injuries reported by Unified Command, the vessel is stable and there has been no oil product lost from the tanker.

Two tugs were mobilized from Homer Thursday morning. Due to a number of safety concerns stemming from one of the response tugs, Unified Command delayed an attempt to refloat the grounded vessel until 8:00 Friday morning to coincide with the morning high tide.

The Seabulk Pride is a 600 ft, double hull and bottomed oil tanker utilized by Tesoro Alaska Company to transport oil. At the time of the grounding, the tanker was carrying 3,987,942 gallons (94,951 barrels) of Vacuum Tower Bottom Blend (VTBB). VTBB is a residual oil product that is not processed at the Tesoro Refinery in Nikiski. VTBB has a thick consistency, similar to asphalt. The Seabulk Pride is also carrying 224,532 gallons (5,346 barrels) of Bunker Oil, 47,670 gallons (1,135 barrels) of gasoline, 520,800 gallons (12,400 barrels) of Heavy Vacuum Gasoline Oil (HVGO) and 100,506 gallons (2,393 barrels) of Diesel Fuel 2.

The Port of Registry of the T/V Seabulk Pride is Port Everglades, Florida. The vessel was built in 1998 by Newport News Shipbuilding, Inc.



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