Disabled Russian container ship being towed away from Haida Gwaii


VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Two more vessels have arrived in the waters off Haida Gwaii to help steer a drifting Russian cargo ship away from the shore.

A Canadian Coast Guard patrol vessel has managed to attach a tow line and is pulling the vessel away from the island.

Sub Lieutenant Ron MacDougall with the Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre in Victoria says conditions are still pretty rough, but they are better than Friday.

“This is a fairly large operation, there is no timeline on this. The effort right now is to continue to keep the line on this and successfully tow her out to sea,” he explains. “We do know that the ten numbers that are on board are all well and working hard to maintain the ship and are just waiting for the situation to be remedied.”

The ship is carrying mining equipment and solvents. There was serious concern it could drift ashore, break apart and spill hundreds of tonnes of diesel and bunker fuel.

The Russian carrier Simushir lost power early Friday off Haida Gwaii while sailing from Washington State to Russia.


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