The following are news releases from the U.S. Coast Guard:
(CHICAGO) (May 10) — Coast Guard personnel and salvage and cleanup crews completed the salvage of the towing vessel Kimberly Selvick from near Burnham Park on the shores of Lake Michigan, Saturday, and it has been towed to Calumet River Slip.
Kimberly Selvick became partially submerged Monday afternoon after it took on water trying to retrieve two barges that broke free during a tow.
The salvage company removed petroleum products from the vessel in a process known as lightering, Friday afternoon. Crews lightered Kimberly Selvick’s forward fuel tank of 9,700 gallons of fuel.
Salvage crews also pumped the aft fuel tank dry Saturday morning, removing 3,900 gallons of fuel for a total of 13,700 gallons of fuel removed from the submerged vessel.
At about 12:30 p.m., the vessel was floating and was secured to the crane barge on scene. The barge was shifted out to deeper water and divers entered the water to complete the hull assessment. The assessment revealed that the keel was split in two locations in the engine room area.
Salvage crews shingled the keel of the vessel and pumped the engine room free of water. They transited the barge and vessel through the Calumet River and moored at the Calumet River Slip, where it will remain until it can enter the drydock, Wednesday, for repairs.
The vessel will be monitored at all times until it is removed from the water.
RELEASE FROM MAY 9
(CHICAGO) — The Coast Guard continues to oversee salvage efforts of the towing vessel Kimberly Selvick in Lake Michigan off of Burnham Park on Friday afternoon.
Kimberly Selvick began taking on water and became partially submerged while trying to retrieve two barges that broke free during a tow on Monday afternoon.
Kimberly Selvick remains partially submerged. A dive survey of the hull has been completed. While the hull appeared intact, divers were unable to see underneath the vessel due to the position in which it is aground.
The Coast Guard approved the salvage plan and will continue oversight until completion. A crane barge and other equipment are on scene to remove diesel fuel from the vessel, a process known as lightering, to minimize the potential for environmental impact. Once the fuel has been removed from the tanks, the vessel will be dewatered and refloated. The crane barge will be used to stabilize the vessel during lightering and dewatering.
The timeline for refloating and towing the vessel to a repair facility depends upon weather conditions.
RELEASE FROM MAY 7
(CHICAGO) — The Coast Guard continued its response to the grounded towing vessel Kimberly Selvick in Lake Michigan off of Burnham Park Wednesday afternoon.
Efforts to salvage the vessel are ongoing and weather conditions are delaying a pre-salvage damage assessment of the vessel and the staging of salvage assets. Until the weather improves, the Coast Guard will continue to work with the responsible party to ensure a salvage plan is prepared and ready for execution.
“Recovering the vessel safely and mitigating potential impacts to the environment are the primary concerns for the planned salvage operation,” said Capt. Jason Neubauer, commanding officer of Marine Safety Unit Chicago.
Kimberly Selvick remains partially submerged in shallow water near Burnham Park. Two barges that broke free from Kimberly Selvick were recovered and towed to Calumet Harbor Fleeting on Monday night.
During salvage planning discussions with vessel representatives, it was determined that the Kimberly Selvick has up to 14,000 gallons of diesel fuel on board. During the initial response to the incident, the Coast Guard reported that the total diesel fuel quantity was 1,400 gallons. Initial inspections show that all fuel tanks remain intact.
SET Environmental has been contracted by the responsible party to monitor and cleanup any pollution from Kimberly Selvick. On Tuesday morning, an oil sheen, likely originating from the vessel’s bilge, was visible in the vicinity of the vessel and along a short section of the Burnham Park shoreline. SET Environmental deployed 800 feet of hard boom around the vessel to contain the sheen and is using alternate oil remediation methods. Company personnel will remain on scene around-the-clock until Kimberly Selvick is successfully salvaged.
RELEASE FROM MAY 6
(CHICAGO) — The Coast Guard is continuing its response to the grounded towing vessel Kimberly Selvick in Lake Michigan off of Burnham Park.
The vessel remains partially submerged, while the two barges that broke free from the tug Monday afternoon have been removed and towed to Calumet Harbor Fleeting.
The vessel began taking on water and became partially submerged while trying to retrieve the two barges. Four people aboard the tug were evacuated by a rescue crew from the Chicago Fire Department Marine Unit. No injuries were reported.
Earlier this morning, a Coast Guard Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City, Mich., conducted an overflight of the area and reported a 10-by-100-foot sheen near the vessel. Initial inspections indicated that the sheen was caused by small quantities of residual oil waste from the tug's bilge and not from fuel onboard. Kimberly Selvick has a maximum capacity of approximately 1,400 gallons of fuel.
The environmental response organization, SET Environmental, has deployed approximately 800 feet of hard boom around the vessel to contain the sheen and will start recovery of the petroleum products. Pollution responders from Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Chicago will remain on scene to monitor the situation and to ensure safety of the waterway surrounding the vessel.
Salvage efforts are ongoing as assets and resources are mobilized. The Coast Guard continues to work with the owner of the vessel to ensure a safe and efficient salvage plan.
RELEASE FROM MAY 5
(CHICAGO) — The Coast Guard and members of the Chicago Fire Department responded Monday afternoon to the grounding of the vessel Kimberly Selvick and two attached barges about one quarter mile east of Burnham Park in Chicago.
A rescue crew from the Chicago Fire Department Marine Unit successfully evacuated four crewmembers from the vessel. No injuries or pollution have been reported.
At 4:42 p.m., a Sector Lake Michigan communications watchstander received a call over VHF-FM channel 16 from a crewmember of Kimberly Selvick reporting it had run aground while trying to retrieve two barges that broke free, and that the vessel was taking on water. The vessel is 55-foot tug and was pushing one rock barge and one crane barge at the time of the incident.
Upon notification of the grounding, boat crews aboard 45-foot and 25-foot response boats from Coast Guard Station Calumet Harbor were dispatched to the location to render assistance. The Coast Guard issued an urgent marine broadcast issued on VHF-FM channel 16, which prompted the dispatch of the Chicago Fire Department dive boat.
Kimberly Selvick remains partially submerged. It has a maximum capacity of 1,400 gallons of fuel. The boat crew aboard the 45-foot response boat remained on scene until dusk to evaluate the situation and check for any signs of pollution. A Chicago Fire Department helicopter and crew conducted an overflight of the area.
Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Chicago personnel are investigating the incident. The Coast Guard will work with the owner of the vessel to ensure proper salvage arrangements are in place. A local towboat company was scheduled to retrieve the two barges Monday night pending on-scene weather conditions. On Tuesday morning, members of a local salvage company are scheduled to arrive and commence dewatering and salvage operations.