We dodged a big bullet on Wednesday. A disabled tug, towing a barge that if I had to guess was loaded with bunker fuel, was aided by the rescue tug from Neah Bay. A reminder that many of us, from Fred Felleman (currently a Port Commissioner in Seattle), People for Puget Sound (Kathy Fletcher, and their staff and board, myself included), the Makah Tribe, and especially then Representative now Senator Keven Van De Wege (who was awarded environmentalist of the year by People for Puget Sound for this bill) pushed a bill over the goal line after 11 years of trying to get this tug funded in Neah Bay. Whatever small costs per year to keep this tug operational pales in comparison to the environmental damage done to the Strait and coast if this disabled tug was allowed to go ashore.
The 113-foot Mauna Loa along with its 320-foot barge were met by the crew of tug vessel Lauren Foss of Neah Bay, which is towing the disabled vessel to Port Angeles. It is expected to arrive at 11 p.m. tonight. (Wednesday evening)