Crewmembers swim to safety after tug capsizes in Chicago


The following is the text of a news release from the U.S. Coast Guard:

(CHICAGO) (Aug. 27) — The Coast Guard is responding to the capsizing of a tug on the Calumet River near the 106th St. Bridge in Chicago in which two crewmembers were able to escape and swim to shore.

The Coast Guard is not releasing the names of those involved.

Shortly after 7 p.m., two crewmembers on board the 57-foot tug Bonnie G. Selvick attempted to turn the vessel around while transiting south on the Calumet River. During the process, the vessel rolled over, began taking on water and sank within minutes. The two crewmembers escaped and swam to shore.

One of the crewmembers contacted watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Lake Michigan with a marine band radio on channel 16. Watchstanders directed the launch of a crew on board 25-foot response boat from Coast Guard Station Calumet Harbor.

Once on scene, the Coast Guard crew confirmed that all crewmembers were accounted for and that there were no injuries.

Personnel from Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Chicago are determining if there is any pollution in the water from the vessel, and beginning an investigation into the cause of the incident.

Initial reports indicate that the vessel is not blocking other vessel traffic on the river. The Coast Guard will determine if a safety zone is needed around the vessel until a salvage crew arrives Thursday.

By Professional Mariner Staff