Thursday, December 24, 2009

Bligh Reef Strikes Again

Tug grounds on same reef as Exxon Valdez tanker - Yahoo! News

Anchorage Alaska - The Coast Guard said Thursday that a 136-foot tug with six crew aboard had just completed an ice survey and was heading back to port in Valdez when it grounded on Bligh Reef. This is the SAME reef hit by the Exxon Valdez in 1989.

Two of the tug's fuel tanks that were damaged contain an estimated 33,500 gallons of diesel fuel. The Coast Guard said Thursday that there was a fuel sheen about 3 miles long and 30 feet wide that had drifted away from the vessel.

We are told not to worry because the diesel, unlike the oil on the Exxon Valdez, will evaporate quickly.

I guess no one has thought of
  • the residue that diesel leaves behind when it evaporates
  • the impact on the fish and wildlife in the area
  • what this means to the health of Prince William Sound, which has never truly recovered from the Exxon-Valdez spill in 1989.
Can we mark the Bligh Reef with, I don't know, a system of buoys, a light house, an alarm system, a guard rail or traffic light?

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