Seaforth Channel Incident

Incident Start Date
October 13, 2016 01:13

Current Date/Time
October 29, 2016 08:00

Next Situation Report
October 29, 2016 – 1800 hours

Seaforth Channel, approximately 11nm west of Bella Bella

The Tug Nathan E. Stewart and Barge DBL 55 ran hard aground on the rocks at 10/13/16 (01:13 PDT). The unit was located in Canadian Waters at 52.14.46N, 128.23.160W at the entrance to Seaforth Channel. The tug remains aground on Athlone Island, approximately 15.5 nm from Bella Bella by water. The tug is aground in shallow water and is partially submerged.
**Volume estimates were updated as follows (on 28 Oct 2016):
The tug was loaded with 223,831 litres of diesel fuel. Kirby was able to confirm that 24,605 litres of diesel fuel were pumped from the tug into tank 3 port on the barge before the pumps failed due to water in the engine room. As of 24/10/16, 110,131 liters of an oil-water mixture has been pumped off of the vessel. At this time all tanks aboard the tug have been pumped off to a lightering vessel. Protective booming of the tug will remain in place throughout the salvage operation. Initial calculations based on volumes recovered are currently estimated at 101,104 litres of diesel and 4,883 litres of lubricants (lube oil, hydraulic oil, gear oil, and spent lube) released to the environment. Further analysis of the composition of the recovered product will be required prior to a definitive number being released. ***

• Ensure the safety of public and response personnel
• Provide proper PPE to all Personnel
• Secure the vessel and refloat/remove from the marine environment
• Control the source
• Containment & collection during repositioning & lifting operation
• Maximize protection of environmentally-sensitive areas, prioritizing of sample collection
• Contain, Recover and Dispose of Spilled Material
• Remove oil from impacted areas
• Recover and rehabilitate impacted wildlife
• Manage coordinated response effort
• Keep the public & stakeholders informed of response activities
• Clear and consistent communication to the community
• Minimize economic impacts from the spill to the Heiltsuk community and the environment
• Minimize local business interruption
• Maintain focus on mitigating and assessing environmental damage

Unified Command
Jim Guidry (Responsible Party Incident Commander)
Jess Housty (Heiltsuk On Scene Commander)
Philip Murdock (Canadian Coast Guard Federal Incident Commander)
Pader Brach (BC Provincial On Scene Commander)


SAFETY (as of 0800 hours, 29/10/16)
• Safety inspections are being conducted for all vessels on the response
• Safety protocols remain in place – as stated on previous situation reports.
• Footing issues have been reported at the Bella Bella fuel docks. Personnel are advised to be aware of footing and areas that could cause slips, trips and falls.

• The fisheries closure for bivalve shellfish fisheries in the Seaforth Channel and Gale Passage remains in place.
• For more information contact: Elysha Gordon 250-756-7192

• The ICP continues to operate out of the Heiltsuk Nation Tribal Council chambers.

• Staging is available at the Bella Bella fuel dock and at Shearwater.
• On-water staging of equipment has been on barges around the response site


(CURRENT SITUATION as of 29/10/16, 0800 hours)
On Scene Safety
• NOTAM was extended to 11th November 2016 at midnight (2500’ ceiling and 5nm radius around the casualty).
• CCGS Bartlett will provide on-scene coordination to all vessels in the field for the day, CCGS Tully will provide at night.
• The CCGS Gordon Reid continues to provide safety support to vessels in the field and will be relieved by CCGS Tanu at ~1200hrs today.
• The CCGS Tully 2 is to transfer personnel between Bella Bella and the casualty site as needed.

Salvage Ops
• StevShark Anchor was set at 2000hrs on 28th.
• Chain being prepared for deployment.
• Possible start of anchor setting for the DB General on clearance from Environmental Unit.
• Prepare for blowdown on casualty
• Revising Salvage Plan with new timeline

Spill Response Ops
• Boom around the casualty was out of position due to swells on the evening of the 28th, no signs of product with use of FLIR on drones.
• GM Penman on scene for daytime skimming support as needed
• Remove damaged boom on shoreline near the casualty using helo support.
• In the case of a Spill the Drone group will be putting a drone in the air with IR cameras to track the spill location for recovery.

Air Operations
• 0830 Beach crew delivery flights using the A-STAR helo.
• 0900 observation overflight (late due to refueling)
• Aircraft DASH 7 will not conduct overflight on 29th (crew resting & routine maintenance)
• 1000, 1200, 1400, 1600 observation overflights
• 1600 beach crew extraction flights will begin.
• 1730 accountability overflight.

(CURRENT SITUATION as of 29/10/16, 0800 hours)

SCAT – (SCAT teams have a mixed representation from Heiltsuk Nation, CCG, BC Ministry of Environment and Polaris with sampling by Cardno)
• PRE-SCAT surveys along north side of Seaforth Channel starting near Bullen Rk. And working west toward Watch Is. Other team will work from Cape Swain (NW corner of Athlone Is.) working south.

• The wildlife field team expects to complete wildlife monitoring along the south shore of Seaforth Channel west of the casualty, and Ivory Island/Powell Anchorage.
• 0800 Tully reported whale sighting swimming south of Ivory Island.

• Ministry of Environment Provincial Incident Commander spoke with Heiltsuk personnel during morning briefing to answer any questions.
• FAST Team on scene
Abalone relocation dive survey for DB General Anchor lines/chains.
• Sampling teams will work in Raymond Passage and Moth Pass
• Sampling teams will gather tissue, sediment, vegetation and water samples in the following locations: Gale Proper (Lagoon), Dufferin Clam Beach, Gale Passage High Beach, Gale Passage Narrows, Raymond West, Matilda, Odin Cove.
• BC Ministry of Environment will continue to work with Heiltsuk Nation, supported by Environment Canada in the Environment Unit.
• Environment Canada (SSC) will continue to support contingency planning for salvage operations with trajectory modeling in the event of a release and site specific weather forecasting.

• Spill information website has been activated

Seaforth Channel Weather: – On scene update at 0900 hours (29/10/16)

Winds: Lt. Airs
Sea: light ripple
Beaufort sea state: 1
Visibility: 10+ nm
Air temp: 9.2°C
Barometer: 1009.8 mbar, falling
Skies: Partly cloudy, 3/8

Seaforth Channel Site Specific Forecast

Forecast Issue Time: 06:00 AM PDT 29/10/2016
Seaforth Channel Specific Synoptic Discussion

Issued 4:00 AM PDT 29 October 2016 – Today Tonight and Sunday
At 4:00 a.m. PDT today low 1010 mb located southwest of Vancouver Island. By 11:00 p.m. PDT tonight low 1008 mb located over Queen Charlotte Sound. At 11:00 p.m. PDT Sunday approaching low located west of Bowie.


Central Coast Marine Forecast (Environment Canada)


Issued 04:00 AM PDT 29 October 2016 – Today Tonight and Sunday
Wind east 5 to 15 knots except northeast 20 near the mainland inlets this morning. Wind becoming southeast 20 to 30 early this evening then diminishing to south 15 Sunday afternoon. Wind diminishing to light Sunday evening.


Issued 04:00 AM PDT 29 October 2016
Today Tonight and Sunday Seas 3 to 5 metres subsiding to 2 to 3 late this morning and to 2 overnight.


Issued 04:00 AM PDT 29 October 2016
Today Tonight and Sunday
A few showers beginning late this afternoon and ending Sunday morning. Fog patches dissipating late this morning.


Issued 04:00 AM PDT 29 October 2016
Monday – Wind southerly 5 to 15 knots increasing to southeast 30 late in the day.
Tuesday – Wind southeast 25 to 35 knots diminishing to southwest 20 late in the day.
Wednesday – Wind south 20 knots increasing to southeast 30 to 40 late in the day.