The Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit in Port Arthur, TX has reported a collision between two towing vessels on August 11, 2009. Both towing vessels, the CAROLINE and the MISS STACIE were pushing barges at mile marker 312 on the Intracoastal Waterway when the collision occurred.
According to the Coast Guard, after the collision, the CAROLINE began taking on water. A good Samaritan towing vessel, the REDEEMER was nearby when the collision happened and rescued the five crewmembers on board the CAROLINE. Once the crewmembers were rescued, the REDEEMER assisted with the CAROLINE’S five barges.
The Intracoastal Waterway was closed as a result of the collision between mile marker 310 to 315 and protective booming was placed around the CAROLINE which was partially submerged. Initial reports indicated a small oil sheen. A unified command consisting of the Coast Guard, Canal Barge Company, and Texas General Land Office is developing and evaluating salvage plans for the CAROLINE.
The collision is currently under investigation.