Department of Ecology News Release - February 22, 2014, 12:00 p.m.

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UPDATE: Cleanup underway at Shelter Bay Marina in La Conner

LA CONNER – The Washington Department of Ecology, U.S. Coast Guard and other agencies are continuing to monitor cleanup at Shelter Bay Marina after a fire early Friday evening that caused seven boats to sink and damaged others, many of them filled with diesel fuel.

An undetermined amount of fuel has been released to the water. Three layers of oil containment boom and absorbent have been deployed to reduce the spread of pollution. A skimmer is also working to remove the oil. The extent of any environmental damage is still being determined, but most of the leaked fuel appears to be contained. The marina is working with boat owners to determine how much fuel is on each boat.

Global Diving and Salvage has been hired by the Coast Guard to recover as much spilled fuel as possible. A separate contractor will be using a crane barge to remove the damaged vessels from the water. Ecology is working with the Coast Guard and the contractors to monitor the cleanup. Cleanup and salvage operations are expected to continue for several days.

The Swinomish Police Department and Skagit County Fire Department are conducting a joint investigation into the cause of the fire.

More information will be posted on a web page designated to this incident and on Ecology’s Twitter site as it becomes available.

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Media Contacts:

Lisa Copeland, Department of Ecology, Lisa.Copeland@ecy.wa.gov, 360-515-6868; @EcologyWA

George Degener, U.S. Coast Guard, George.L.Degener@uscg.mil, 206-251-3237

Larry Kibbee, Shelter Bay Community, manager@shelterbay.net, 360-770-6925

For more information:

Ecology incident web page (www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/spills/incidents/LaConner/index.html)

Ecology Spills Program (www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/spills/spills.html)

Ecology's social media (www.ecy.wa.gov/about/socialmedia.html)