Operator escapes after ‘dozer’ tug capsizes off Vancouver Island

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(VICTORIA, British Columbia) — A tugboat capsized while assisting a larger tug that was towing a barge off the coast of Vancouver Island, with the operator subsequently rescued, CTV News reported.

The incident happened shortly after 7 p.m. Thursday as the tugboats were guiding the barge, which was carrying two homes.

“It was just a quick jerk and the next thing you know the little boat just completely flipped over,” said Marie Racine, who was on shore hoping to see the barge offload the homes.

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The operator of a “dozer” tug awaits rescue from atop the capsized vessel off Vancouver Island. Screenshot from Marie Racine video

The smaller tug, called a “dozer” tug, didn’t right itself, and Racine said it took the operator 20 to 30 seconds to resurface.

The man was able to climb onto the hull of the overturned vessel and was rescued by the other tugboat and people aboard the barge.

The Joint Rescue Coordination Centre (JRCC) said it was aware of the incident but did not deploy resources.

By Professional Mariner Staff