Homer Fishing Vessel Grounded Near PWS

Jay Barrett/KMXT

Two Air Station Kodiak helicopters and a cutter from Homer are attempting to rescue the crew of a grounded fishing boat near Prince William Sound. The 42-foot Homer-based fishing vessel "Ruffian," is reported to be taking on water in the vicinity of Latouche Island. The Coast Guard says the boat’s skipper intentionally grounded the Ruffian to keep from sinking in deeper water. It reportedly carries 200 gallons of diesel fuel, and is now sitting with its stern submerged.

A VHF distress call relayed from a nearby salmon hatchery was received at the same time an EPIRB signal was detected, at 12:44 this (Tuesday) morning.

An MH-60 Jayhawk from Kodiak responded at 1:45 a.m., but due to restricted visibility, could not locate the vessel. The chopper diverted to Cordova for the night. At 9:20 this morning a second Jayhawk launched from Kodiak to join the rescue effort. The cutter Roanoke Island departed from Homer this morning and was expected to arrive around 3 p.m.

Meanwhile, the 110-foot fishing vessel "Vanguard" responded as well, and is on the scene, but the water is too shallow for it to reach the Ruffian.

Weather on scene is 30 knot winds and 3-foot seas. No injuries have been reported.

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