By CALEB JONES
HONOLULU (AP) - The Coast Guard says pollution cleanup could take weeks for a fishing boat that smashed into a shallow reef off Hawaii and has been leaking oil and fuel into the water.
The vessel was taking workers from Southeast Asia and other Pacific islands to work low-paying jobs in Hawaii's fishing fleet when it smashed into a shallow reef on Oct. 10.
The boat has been leaking pollutants ever since a fire broke out on the deck days after the crash. There is a visible sheen around the boat.
The Coast Guard said in a statement Thursday that expert teams will assess damages to the coral reef as soon as the vessel is removed.
The crash illustrates a potential environmental impact of the Hawaii fishing industry fleet's practice of transporting foreign workers by boat.