Two boats run aground off Oahu - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Two boats run aground off Oahu

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Boat aground off Waianae Boat aground off Waianae
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Two boats remain stuck on Oahu shores Thursday, according to the Department of Land and Natural Resources, one of them is aground on living coral.

DLNR's Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation says a 40-foot boat went aground about midnight Wednesday on the reef near the Ahu O Laka sandbar in Kaneohe Bay.

Officials say the owner has no vessel insurance and that the boat's hull is flooded and listing to one side.

The Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation (DOBOR) Thursday morning posted a notice on the vessel to inform the owner that he has until 10 a.m. Friday to remove the vessel. 

According to DLNR officials, the boat is aground on living coral and is in close proximity to an area used for marine tourism.

"The vessel did do some damage to the coral reef in the area and that's our main concern ... that along with the fuel that's on board, which is diesel," said Meghan Statts, Oahu District Manager for the DLNR's Boating and Ocean Recreation Division.

The state is looking into the pilot's role in the crash. It said the captain was outside of the boating channel -- headed toward Heeia Kea Harbor -- when he hit the reef.

"My understanding is the owner was not in the channel. He was on the outside the channel. Anyone knows Kaneohe Bay knows you have a lot of coral reefs sticking out," Statts said.

DOBOR was meeting with the Coast Guard Thursday morning at Heeia pier to ask that they federalize the Coast Guard documented vessel and remove the fuel that is on board.  There is reported to be between 30 to 70 gallons of diesel aboard.  

The USCG received a call from the previous owner of the vessel which is Boom Boom Sportfishing, LLC.  They are concerned because they weren't paid for the vessel when they originally sold the vessel.

The buyer allegedly sold it again to the current owner who had not yet registered or documented the vessel.  There may be a lien on the boat by the company. The current owner does not have the means to pay for salvage removal.  

DLNR says that while details are being sorted out, DOBOR will prepare to step in to protect the reef and get the vessel removed by obtaining bids from salvage companies.

A second boat, a 36-foot vessel went aground on rocks in Waianae on Monday. That vessel still remains on the rocks in Waianae as of Thursday morning.

DOBOR Thursday morning posted a notice on the boat to inform the owner that he has until 11 a.m. Friday to remove the vessel or DOBOR will take control of it.  DLNR says that the owner has contacted Parker Marine to arrange for salvage removal. 

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