Tug ‘Samson Mariner’ Sustains Minor Hull Breach After Grounding in Alaska’s Inside Passage

Mike Schuler
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February 16, 2017

Samson Mariner file photo courtesy Marine Exchange of Alaska

Friday Update: The Coast Guard said 1,100 gallons of diesel were spilled from the tugboat. The tug and barge have been secured. Story here

Thursday: A U.S. Coast Guard pollution team in Ketchikan responded to a tug ran aground while towing a barge in the vicinity of north Tongass Narrows in Rosa Reef, Alaska, on Wednesday evening.

The Coast Guard Coast says it received notification via VHF-FM radio from the captain of the tugboat Samson Mariner that his vessel ran aground and had a minor breach in the hull.

Coast Guard Station Ketchikan and pollution responders were immediately launched and arrived on scene to place a boom around the tug. They also verified that crew of the Samson Mariner had plugged the breached hull.

The Samson Mariner is reported to have 30,000 gallons of fuel on board and the barge has 40,000 gallons of diesel.

Three Southeast Alaska Petroleum Response Organization tugs took the barge to Ward Cove where it will be anchored and assessed for damage.

No damage to the barge or injuries have been reported.

Tongass Narrows is located northwest of Ketchikan and is part of Southeast Alaska’s sheltered Inside Passage.

The 90-foot Samson Mariner belongs to Samson Tug and Barge. According to the company’s website, the tug was towing is hauling the dry cargo barge St. Elias as part of its regular service from Seattle to Western Alaska.

The tug and barge were due to arrive in Valdez, AK on Sunday. It’s unclear at this point if the schedule has changed.

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