BANDON, OR (KPTV) – Crews including a helicopter have finished removing major debris left off the Oregon coast after a 64-foot fishing boat caught fire while at sea and later washed ashore.
The crew abandoned the Ann Kathleen and was rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard.
The wood and fiberglass boat caught fire south of Bandon and washed ashore May 2 in a remote area of beach north of Floras Lake at low tide, according to the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department.
The boat ran aground near a shorebird nesting area, according to authorities, who say the area is designated for the recovery of the western snowy plover.
OPRD staff say they kept an eye on the federally-protected bird and other sensitive resources as crews worked the clear the wreckage.
OPRD Friday said the vast majority of the wreckage was removed by helicopter last week. Smaller, lighter debris was removed using ATVs.
According to OPRD, a portion of the heavy keel was left to sink into the sand. The keel does not contain hazardous material.
The cleanup was organized by the parks and recreation department and funded by the boat’s insurer. It involved excavators, a salvage crew, and support from the Coquille Indian Tribe, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.
Several agencies previously removed more than 1,000 gallons of diesel fuel from the boat’s fuel tanks. OPRD said Friday that some residual fuel was recovered during final demolition. No hazardous fluids from the shipwreck were detected on the beach or in the ocean.
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