Tug lists, sinks near Long Island after engine room fills with water

Investigators are trying to determine why a 38-foot tugboat took on water and capsized three miles south of Long Island.

Sea Lion, built in 1980 and owned by Sea Wolf Marine Inc. of Bayonne, N.J., sank Jan. 15. It had left Upper New York Bay en route to a towing job at Long Island’s Shinnecock Inlet, said Lt. Cmdr. Bill Grossman, chief of the Investigations Division for Coast Guard Sector New York.

The agency was notified at 1500 that the steel-hull tug with four crewmembers aboard was taking on water south of Atlantic Beach.

“The vessel took a sudden 30° list to starboard,” Grossman said. “One of the crewmembers was able to look down in the engine room and noticed a lot of water.” The crewmembers were able to don their survival suits and were rescued by a boat working on a film shoot. Sea Lion sank at 1611 with no reported oil leakage.

Boats from Coast Guard Stations Jones Beach and Sandy Hook arrived at approximately 1720 and the mariners were taken to Jones Beach. One crewmember who injured his chest while leaving the tug was treated at a hospital and discharged that evening.

The owner is working on salvage of the tug, Grossman said.

The company did not respond to a call for comment.

By Professional Mariner Staff