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Sinking Barge at Point Conception
updated: Jun 19, 2014, 8:00 AM

UPDATE provided by the US Coast Guard
June 19, 2014 8:00 am

(Photo: US Coast Guard)


SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The Coast Guard has completed clean up and removal efforts of a barge that sank near Point Conception State Marine Reserve, on June 8, 2014.

Around 12:15 p.m. on the 8th, the Coast Guard received a distress call from the tugboat Calvin, reporting that the 260-foot barge Nash was sinking. The barge had a cargo of 3,900 metric tons of magnesium chloride, a non-hazardous derivative of sea water. The barge sank stern first leaving the bow extended above the water. During the sinking, air spaces in the aft cargo tanks were crushed and the hull breached. The barge is resting approximately 1/2 mile south of the oil and gas pipelines extending from the Freeport-McMorRan Hermosa Platform to the shore near Point Conception. Tugs have maintained watch over the wreckage to ensure it did not shift or move during salvage efforts.

The cargo of Magnesium Chloride was largely released during the initial sinking event with no projected or observed environmental impact. A Unified Command Post was established with representatives from the Coast Guard, California’s Department of Fish & Wildlife, and Global Diving & Salvage to protect marine life and environmental concerns and ensure the safety of salvage operations. The Coast Guard worked closely with the Environmental Protection Agency, National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration, and the National Marine Fisheries Service to designate a deep ocean disposal location offshore where the barge could be scuttled safely with minimal impact to the environment.

The barge was successfully scuttled offshore June 17.

The owner of the barge, Seattle-based Salmon Bay Barge Line, Inc., contracted with Global Diving & Salvage, Inc. to provide a team of marine salvors to restore sufficient buoyancy to the badly damaged hull to allow it to be towed offshore and away from the sensitive areas.


UPDATE by an edhat subscriber
June 18, 2014 7:10am

This is the picture of the Tug boats trying to level out the Barge off of Point Conception Monday morning. The two Tugs are in the foreground to the Left and Right of the Barge, they’re trying to level the Barge out, one chain was attached to the bow and the other was attached to the keel. The ship behind the Tug on the Left is the Coast Guard. Just thought you might want to see the picture.

Image Size: FULL


By Edhat Subscriber
June 17, 2014 10:48 am

Does anyone know anything about the shipping barge that sank off of Point Conception?

From a contact that works in the industry, I've heard that it's about 300 ft long, has undisclosed cargo, and the plan is to tow it into deeper water and sink it. I've looked for reports online, called the coast guard, but can get no answers.

My friend in the industry said that they're being very hush-hush about it, no details on what happened, what's on the barge, etc..

The coast guard said they'd call me back with more information, but I've heard nothing back.

(Photo was taken from Jalama Beach on the morning of June 9th 2014)

Shipping Barge Capsizes Off Point Conception: Officials So Far Completely Silent on the Incident (06/19/14)
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