Coast Guard: Partially sunken tugboat leaks oil in Skiffes Creek

Credit: U.S. Coast Guard

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) — The Coast Guard is working with local authorities on pollution response for a partially sunken tugboat that leaked oil into Skiffes Creek.

Coast Guard officials says a passing tugboat captain reported the submerged boat on Jan. 20. The boat was leaking oil.

Teams from the Coast Guard, Newport News and Virginia Department of Emergency Management responded to the scene.

Officials say the boat, which is named the “Bourne,” has a fuel capacity of 21,000 gallons of oil, but only leaked 5 to 10 gallons. It is unknown how much oil the Bourne had onboard.

Credit: U.S. Coast Guard

Cleanup will include removing what oil remains in the Bourne’s tanks. Officials say they have not been able to contact the boat’s owner.

Lt. j.g. Stasia Ellis, a marine environmental response chief at Sector Hampton Roads, stated Wednesday, “The Coast Guard’s main concern is ensuring minimal impact to the environment and maximum safety to the local boating community.”