Response to grounded cargo vessel Bonnie G continues

Written by Marine Log Staff
Bonnie G

Responders have removed batteries from vehicles aboard the grounded vessel

The Coast Guard today established a safety zone around the Bonnie G, the cargo vessel that grounded Wednesday just south of the airport in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. All 12 persons aboard the vessel were rescued, and no injuries were reported to the Coast Guard.

The safety zone will extend one quarter mile around the Bonnie G for the duration of the response. Commercial and recreational vessels are advised to remain clear of this area for their safety and the safety of response crews working the site.

The Bonnie G continues to remain stable and there are no reports of oil discharge or visible oil sheen observed in the water.

During Friday’s response efforts, oil spill removal organization (OSRO) crews from the National Response Corporation and Playland Marine LLC have been on scene with Coast Guard personnel conducting assessments, draft readings and soundings to develop a safety and salvage plan. Donjon Marine Co. divers are simultaneously conducting an underwater assessment of the vessel’s hull and the subsurface marine environment.

OSRO crew have removed batteries from the vehicles onboard the Bonnie G and the vessel crewmembers are installing a solar panel to supply lighting and Automatic Identification System transmission on the grounded vessel, so that it will be visible to other maritime traffic to reduce the potential of further incidents.

During Thursday’s activities, OSRO crews reported that they embarked the Bonnie G and closed all watertight hatches to prevent progressive flooding and placed 100-feet of containment boom around the stern of the grounded to contain any potential oil pollutants from discharging.

Coast Guard crews continue to work closely with the responsible party and the OSRO, as well as the Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Coral Center, local government officials and other stakeholders supporting the response.

“Our main priorities in the Bonnie G response are the safety of responders, mariners and the U.S. Virgin Islands boating community, the protection of the marine environment and the protection of the Charlotte Amalie port area,” said Capt. José E. Díaz, Incident Commander for the Bonnie G response. “We appreciate all of the collaborative support in this response effort from the federal and local government entities as well as valuable partners and stakeholders who are committed to protecting the pristine waters and marine environment in the U.S. Virgin Islands.”

The Bonnie G is reported to have approximately 13,000 gallons of fuel and approximately 700 gallons of lube oil onboard. Additionally, the vessel was carrying six cars, a bucket truck, a semi-truck rig, a trailer and container, two forklifts, a general-purpose lift as well as two pallets of cargo.

According to the Equasis data base, the Bonnie G , a 195-foot Vanuatu-flagged RO/RO cargo vessel was originally built in 1981 as an offshore service vessel and is currently managed by West Palm Beach, Fla., based MMS Americas LLC.

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