Weather delays divers reaching capsized tugboat

Weather delays divers reaching capsized tugboat

Montreal: Divers will probably wait until Friday for safety reasons before approaching one of two tugboats that capsized on the St Lawrence River near Cornwall, Ontario, on Monday.

The Lac Manitoba was wrecked when trying to manoeuvre a large barge in difficult weather conditions on Monday. And a sister ship the LCM 131suffered the same fate a few hours later. All crew members evacuated safely with one from the Lac Manitoba taken to hospital with a non-life-threatening injury.

A Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) spokesman said the aim of the diving operation will be to assess the extent of the damage, including how much fuel leakage has occurred and to see how the vessel can be salvaged. But the first priority is the divers’ wellbeing.

On initial impression a small amount of diesel fuel appeared to have been “trickling” from the two wrecks but the fuel tanks of both vessels seemed stable, a CCG spokesman said on Wednesday.

Also on Wednesday a CCG helicopter was overflying the Lac Manitoba wreck.

Canada’s Transportation Safety Board is the lead investigative body in the case.

Donal Scully

With 28 years experience writing and editing for newspapers in the UK and Hong Kong, Donal is now based in California from where he covers the Americas for Splash as well as ensuring the site is loaded through the Western Hemisphere timezone.

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