Tanker Minerva Iris runs aground in Houston Ship Channel

The following is the text of a press release issued by the U.S. Coast Guard:


(GALVESTON, Texas) — Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Galveston is monitoring the grounding of a 770-foot tank ship today in the Houston Ship Channel, south of the Trinity River Channel in Galveston Bay.

The tank ship Minerva Iris, ran aground earlier this morning on the west side of the Houston Ship Channel, but has now been freed with the assistance of three tug boats. A Coast Guard Air Station Houston MH-65C helicopter and crew conducted an over flight of the grounded tank ship, and found no signs of pollution from the ship. The crew of the Minerva Iris did not report any injuries. Coast Guard investigators were on scene to conduct a preliminary investigation of the grounded tank ship.

The Minerva Iris is reported to have approximately 25 million gallons of fuel oil on board.

“This was another example of excellent teamwork between the Coast Guard and key stakeholders. The primary objectives, which focused on the safety of the crew, the safety of the environment, and the opening of the waterway, were all accomplished by teamwork,” said Cmdr. Jim Elliott, commander officer of MSU Galveston.

Coast Guard personnel worked closely with the tank ship’s owner Iris M. Special Maritime Enterprise, Texas General Land Office, United States Mineral Management Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association in response to this grounding.

Video of the response can be found by clicking on the following link:


By Professional Mariner Staff