The fishing vessel Speranza Marie lays on its port side after running aground on Santa Cruz Island, Dec. 15, 2022. Photos by Unified Command responders.

Fishing Vessel Grounds on Southern California’s Santa Cruz Island

Mike Schuler
Total Views: 3154
December 16, 2022

A 60-foot fishing vessel carrying roughly 1,000 gallons of diesel ran aground on Santa Cruz Island of the coast of Southern California on Thursday morning, spilling some of the fuel into the water.

The F/V Speranza Marie had six people on board when it grounded in Chinese Harbor, on the northern side of the island, at approximately 2 a.m. A good Samaritan fishing vessel responded to the incident and safely transferred the six crewmembers to their boat without injury and transported them to Ventura, CA.

A Unified Command has been set up and is creating a pollution mitigation and removal plan.??

The fishing vessel Speranza Marie lays on its port side after running aground on Santa Cruz Island, Dec. 15, 2022. Photos by Unified Command responders.

Cleanup crews have been on-scene containing and recovering the diesel fuel.

On Friday, response teams working to to stabilize the vessel and deploy boom in preparation for the removal of diesel fuel and cargo.   

The Coast Guard said diesel fuel is considered a non-persistent oil, compared to a heavier bunker or crude oil product, in even the calmest sea conditions, as it will lose 40% of its volume due to evaporation within 48 hours in cold weather.

No wildlife impacts have been reported thus far and monitoring continues.

The cause of the incident is currently under investigation.

The Unified Command consists of representatives from the Coast Guard, California Department of Fish and Wildlife Office of Spill Prevention and Response, Santa Barbara County, Channel Islands National Park and Channel Islands Marine Sanctuary and the responsible party, Ocean Angel VI LLC. 

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