Coast Guard investigates fishing vessel's sinking off James Island
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Petty Officer 3rd Class Janssen Troyer/Coast Guard
Two 47-foot Motor Life Boat crews from Coast Guard Station Quillayute River respond to help the crew of the Fjord Mist, left, a 50-foot fishing vessel taking on water 2 miles west of James Island on Friday.

Peninsula Daily News

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LAPUSH — The Coast Guard is investigating why a fishing vessel sank 2 miles west of James Island on Friday.

Coast Guard crews rescued three fishermen from the 50-foot Fjord Mist before it sank in 103 feet of water at 11:23 a.m., said Coast Guard spokesman Petty Officer 1st Class David Mosley.

The fishermen, who were not identified, reported no injuries, Mosley said.

They were taken safely to the Coast Guard station at Quillayute River after a call for help made at 8:33 a.m., he said.

Investigation could take days or weeks, he added.

The Fjord Mist is a seiner fishing vessel homeported in LaPush. It is not a tribal boat, Mosley said.

The crew reportedly was fishing for hagfish, also known as slime eels, Mosley said, and carrying 150 gallons of fuel onboard when the vessel sank.

A light fuel sheen has been reported from the area. Such sheens cannot be cleaned up, and no cleanup is underway, according to Mosley.

Two boat crews from Station Quillayute River and an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from the Coast Guard station in Port Angeles were directed to the sinking vessel.

A dewatering pump was provided to the fishing vessel crew, but the pump was unable to keep up with the flooding.

“Despite the delivery of a dewatering pump, our on-scene crews determined that for their safety, the fishermen needed to be evacuated from the sinking vessel,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Stephen Fleming, an operations specialist at Sector Puget Sound.

“The fishermen were safely taken to the small boat station, where Coast Guard investigators will work with them to understand the circumstances leading up to the rescue.”

Last modified: September 28. 2013 5:31PM
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