The U.S. Coast Guard is responding to a commercial bulk carrier that ran soft aground on a sand bar at the entrance to Muskegon in West Michigan late Thursday.
The 750-foot M/V Kaye E. Barker ran aground at around 8:30 p.m. on April 28 while transiting inbound towards Muskegon with a load of stone aggregate. No injuries have been reported and initial inspections indicated no pollution.
The M/V Kaye E. Barker was originally built in 1976 and is operated by The Interlake Steamship Company. The company said the vessel is loaded with approximately 25,000 net tons of stone from Port Inland, Michigan, and pointed to shifting sand as a potential cause.
“When making the approach, the ship was positioned in the center of the channel and was traveling at a slow speed before the incident,” Interlake said in an update posted to Facebook. “The lake bottom has been surveyed, and it has been confirmed that there is sand around the vessel.”
The Coast Guard is on site and working with the shipping company, local salvage organizations and the vessel crew to conduct lightering operations today to free the vessel from the sand bar.
The cause of the grounding is currently under investigation and the Coast Guard said more information will be released as it becomes available.
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