Strong Winds May Have Sunk Wayward Oregon Tugboat
We still don't know the back story on this tugboat, but Oregon officials now suspect weather was the culprit.
No word on what condition the 38-foot tugboat was in when it sank Sunday in the Columbia about ten miles up from McNary Dam. But Oregon Department of Environmental quality officials say, as well as others, strong winds were to blame. We don't know if it was an active boat, or perhaps out of service, or going to be scrapped.
The strong winds pulled hard on the vessel, broke the mooring lines on the Oregon shore, and as the tug drifted out into the river, whipped up the waves. This likely resulted in the boat taking on water and sinking.
It had been moored Friday and Saturday, but likely broke loose Sunday, and sank that day. When whomever was in charge of it came to check Monday, it was gone. Divers located it about a mile away underwater. However, none of the 750 gallons of diesel fuel have leaked, and divers closed all vents and openings on the boat til it can be pulled up Wednesday by a large crane coming from Vancouver.
The crew was not on board when it sank.