The Coast Guard closely monitored as the grounded fishing vessel Michelle D was successfully refloated at approximately 11 p.m.., Monday.
The fishing vessel Alexa B took advantage of the eight-foot high tide near the Skipanon River entrance in Warrenton, Ore., successfully towing the Michelle D out of the soft mud and into the river.
The plan to refloat the vessel was the direct result of close collaboration among Coast Guard Sector Columbia River personnel and the owner of the Michelle D.
A 47-foot motor lifeboat crew from Sector Columbia River’s Station Cape Disappointment in Ilwaco, Wash., was on scene to keep an eye on the operation, promoting safety and mitigating the potential for pollution. After refloating, the vessel was towed to Warrenton Marina by the Alexa B and boarded by the Coast Guard.
Several violations were found, including inoperable navigation lights on the port side, an expired EPIRB and a lack of proper required onboard documentation for the vessel.
The official cause of the grounding has not been determined, though the Michelle D crew has sited problems with the vessel’s steering components.
No structural damage or pollution were reported.