Ballasting operations were completed Thursday night on the SS Davy Crockett, the derelict ship moored on the north shore of the Columbia River near Camas.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard, during the operation crews lowered the stern 17-feet to allow four remotely operated pumps to flood cargo hold compartments with approximately 600,000 gallons of water. The goal is to determine the location of pollutants that remain on the vessel.
“Long-term salvage plans or time line estimates would be speculative until more is known about pollutants contained within the compartments of the Davy Crockett,” said Coast Guard Capt. Daniel LeBlanc, federal on-scene coordinator. “Parallel to the recovery and salvage operation, an investigation is being conducted into the events leading up to the spill of oil.”
The Davy Crockett suffered a significant structural failure in late January during a salvage operation being conducted by the owner, who was then issued an administrative order on Jan. 21 by the Coast Guard to take cleanup action or face penalties.
Soon after, Ballard Diving & Salvage, a Seattle based company, was hired by the vessel’s owner to complete the cleanup. Trained salvage crews worked on the ship to locate and evaluate sources of oil.