Race on to prevent spill from sunken boat in Bellingham

(Information on this site is considered to be accurate at the time of posting, but is subject to change as new information becomes available.)  

Thursday, 8/11/11 5:00 pm 

The contractor safely completed the removal of fuel from Norman B’s two tanks. Crews were not able to access other fluids on board, such as hydraulic and lubricating oil. Boom and cleanup materials remain in place surrounding the vessel. About 20 gallons of oily material has been recovered from the boomed area. The vessel’s owner is making arrangements to raise and recover the boat. Ecology and the Coast Guard will continue to monitor that process.

Thursday, 8/11/11 3:30 pm 

The Washington Department of Ecology, U.S. Coast Guard and Port of Bellingham are overseeing efforts to prevent a diesel fuel spill from a sunken fishing boat at Squalicum Harbor Marina on Bellingham Bay.

The 50-foot vessel Norman B went to the bottom at its mooring before 7 a.m. today. The cause of the sinking remains under investigation. The Norman B’s owner has hired a contractor to remove an estimated 200-300 gallons of diesel fuel aboard the boat. The incoming tide has reached the fuel tank vents, and the vessel is now mostly submerged. One of the vessel's fuel tanks has been emptied so far.

The contactor will later raise the vessel.

Port responders quickly surrounded the boat with oil-spill containment boom and cleanup materials from an Ecology spill-response equipment trailer kept at the marina. A small release of diesel fuel has formed sheen within the boomed area.














Photos by Ecology responder, Dick Walker.



Date of Incident:
August 11, 2011, 7:00 a.m.

Squalicum Harbor Marina
Bellingham, Washington

Diesel, estimated 200-300 gallons

Under Investigation

Responsible Party:
Private party


WA Dept of Ecology
Larry Altose

U.S. Coast Guard
Lt. Walt Daniel

Port of Bellingham
Marie Duckworth