Thousands of gallons of oil, diesel fuel sink with fishing vessel near Washington’s San Juan Islands

By OPB staff (OPB)
Aug. 14, 2022 3:44 p.m.
An aerial image looking down at coastal waters that show a sheen of oil.

A visible sheen of oil covering nearly 2 miles west of Sunset Point, San Juan Island, Wash., is visible Saturday afternoon after a 49-foot fishing vessel sank off the coast.

Courtesy of the U.S. Coast Guard

Thousands of gallons of diesel and oil sank along with a 49-foot commercial fishing vessel off the coast of the San Juan Islands Saturday afternoon.

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There was a visible sheen of oil covering nearly 2 miles west of Sunset Point by 5 p.m., according to a statement from the U.S. Coast Guard. All five crewmembers on the shipping vessel, called Aleutian Isle, were rescued by a bystander.

The agency says about 2,600 gallons of fuel sank along with the ship. Its Pacific Northwest office on Twitter said it’s monitoring the area for orcas, specifically southern resident killer whales, which frequent the region.

“While there are not any whales currently in the area, our agencies are prepared to deploy authorized deterrents,” its post reads.

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