Crews Trying to Reach Cargo Vessel Adrift in Bering Sea

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Jacob Resneck/KMXT

A 738-foot bulk carrier cargo ship carrying more than a half million gallons of fuel oil has lost power in the Bering Sea and is currently adrift about 40 miles north of Adak Island.

Worrying rescuers is the presence of 520,440 gallons of heavy fuel oil, 11,748 gallons of diesel and 10,000 gallons of lube oil aboard. The Liberian-flagged vessel is called the Golden Seas and reportedly carrying rapeseed, not canola oil as earlier stated.

Petty Officer David Mosley in Anchorage says the Coast Guard is mustering an air and sea response.

— (goldenseas 1 :23 "There’s 20 people on board … environmental impact.")

An ocean-going tug called Tor Viking is being dispatched from Dutch Harbor, 400 miles away. There are fears it will not reach the Golden Seas before it makes landfall sometime tomorrow morning. The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation projects that at its current drift trajectory Atka Island as well as Korovin Bay and Korovin Lagoon, both within the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge are threatened. No oil has been reported spilled but DEC is is calling the situation a "potential spill incident."

The Golden Seas reportedly lost power at about 12:15 a.m. Friday after the turbocharger in the ship’s single propulsion system failed. The crew has told the Coast Guard that the engine is apparently not repairable at sea.

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