Heavy-lift crane barge arrives at tsunami-stricken Calif. harbor

The following is the text of a press release issued by the U.S. Coast Guard:
Date: March 24, 2011 Time: 1200

Location: Crescent City Inner Basin Harbor, Crescent City, California
Cause: Tsunami following 9.0 earthquake in Japan (March 11)
Operational Update:
A heavy-lift crane barge from the San Francisco Bay Area has arrived offshore to facilitate the mitigation of pollution hazards. This is an important step, so Crescent City can begin restoring its harbor. Once the four-man crew has positioned the crane barge in the harbor and completed set-up, it will begin hoisting operations. Set-up may take several days, weather permitting. Responders have identified 10 sunken vessels that remain a potential pollution threat. The crane will raise the vessels to allow for removal of pollution, and then place them onshore for the Harbor District. Cleanup crews have removed approximately 1,307 gallons of petroleum products from damaged vessels and 1,250 cubic yards of debris from the inner boat basin. The Coast Guard reduced the safety zone, opening up the Crescent City Harbor to vessel traffic and commercial fishing. Only the inner boat basin remains closed. Those seeking to transfer their fishing vessel permits should contact the Department of Fish and Game’s License and Revenue Branch at 916-928-7470. There are 71 personnel participating in the response effort. This includes two contracted dive teams. The Unified Command has used several local contractors and remains committed to using local resources whenever possible.
Closures or restrictions:
Between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., C, D, E, and F docks are open to owners of vessels within the boomed off area. Vessel owners should contact Coast Guard Auxiliary members at the Harbor Office to schedule a visit. For emergencies only, owners wishing to access their vessels outside of that time frame may contact the Coast Guard. Requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Personal flotation devices are required on all docks. Harbor is closed to the public at night, from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., until further notice. Safety zone in place for inner boat basin only. The harbor is now open to vessel traffic.
Harbor operations:
Crescent City Harbor asks affected boat owners to contact the harbor at 707-464-6174 ext. 22 to provide the following information: Boat name, official number/VIN, fuel capacity, actual fuel onboard, and contact information.
Wildlife: There have been no reports of oiled wildlife. Monitoring is ongoing.
Crews deployed: U.S. Coast Guard, California Department of Fish and Game (DFG), Harbor District personnel and oil spill response organizations.
Information numbers:
Crescent City Harbormaster’s Office: 707-464-6174 ext. 22
Report oil to 1-800-852-7550
Report Injured Wildlife to 1-877-823-6926
DFG’s License and Revenue Branch: 916-928-7470.
By Professional Mariner Staff