Petition launched in support of retrieving sunken tugboat

Joshua Azizi
03/04/2021

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The wife of one of the men who died in a tugboat accident south of Kitimat last February has launched a petition on Change.org in support of retrieving the sunken boat. 

On the petition's page, Judy Carlick Pearson says she believes the sunken tugboat could hold evidence as to how the boat sank, killing her husband Troy Pearson as well as one other passenger.

She also expressed concerns about possible environmental risks regarding fuel in the sunken boat.

Director of Incident Management for the Canadian Coast Guard's Western Division Jeff Brady says that the Coast Guard currently doesn't see it as a priority to retrieve the sunken boat, and they predict that most of the fuel in the boat has already dissipated. 

However, he added that the coast guard would support retrieving the boat if other public groups such as Transport Canada or the RCMP deemed it important.

"We've sent our pollution plane, our surveillance plane overhead, we've had our Coast Guard ship, Sir John Franklin and of course the RCMP have been on seen for the vessel. We haven't seen much pollution on water and there's a high likelihood that there's minimal amounts left on board.

"That risk or that threat really doesn't speak to the need to do any type of recovery options at this time but we're going to continue to monitor the situation and work with our partners and RCMP, Transport Canada, maybe the Transportation Safety Board, and support them. And if they decide to salvage the vessel or recover the vessel, we'll absolutely support them then."

CFTK has reached out to the RCMP North Division for comment on this story.

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