The Canadian Coast Guard plans to soon ensure leaking fuel from a boat beached in Comox is cleaned up.
Comox resident Lee Boyd, who works at St. Joseph’s General Hospital, says he’s seen the Gale Force leaking pollutants into the ocean in front of the hospital.
“All of us, as hospital employees, have been watching oil and gas leak into the ocean on high tide every day, a big rainbow,” he says. “It’s quite a bit of oil and gas that’s been coming out of that thing at high tide … It’s devastating to watch.”
The boat has been beached about 100 yards out from shore near Beaton Avenue since the windstorm Sept. 29.
Jim Linderback, Comox station leader for the Royal Canadian Marine Search & Rescue, says RCM SAR were called out at the time of the storm, but the boat did not appear to be leaking then.
Boyd says he reported the leak last week, and according a Department of Fisheries and Oceans spokesperson, the boat was assessed Thursday by the Coast Guard.
The Coast Guard “will try this week to place booms around the boat to contain any leaking fuel and to hire a contractor to remove the fuel from the boat,” continued the spokesperson in an e-mail, adding the Coast Guard is also working to contact the boat owner so that person “can take appropriate action, including removing the boat.”
According to the DFO, the Coast Guard becomes involved when abandoned vessels are leaking pollutants into the water.