Coast Guard Watching Sheen After Sinking 'Ghost Ship'

Apr 6, 2012

The Coast Guard is watching for fuel and debris from a derelict Japanese fishing vessel it sank off the coast of Southeast Alaska on Thursday.

Kip Wadlow is with the agency’s public affairs office. He says all that was spotted was a small sheen. But he expected that to dissipate quickly.

Wadlow says the Ryou-un Maru went down at 6:15 p.m. local time in about 6,000 feet of water.

Kip Wadlow: "When the ship started to sink, the starboard quarter, or the right-back side, went in the water first. And then the ship just slowly rolled over and sank."

The 200 foot vessel was washed out to sea by last year’s Japanese tsunami. It crossed the Pacific Ocean without crew or power, then drifted up the coast of British Columbia into Alaska waters.

Wadlow says the Coast Guard fired 440 rounds of explosives at the ship’s waterline. It’s not clear how many pollutants the ship had on board. The Coast Guard does not believe it contained any radiation.

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