Damaged sailboat still stuck along Magic Island break wall - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Damaged sailboat still stuck along Magic Island break wall

Lt. John Titchen Lt. John Titchen

By Leland Kim - bio | email

MAGIC ISLAND (KHNL) -  The remains of a 37-foot sailboat sit on the break wall at Magic Island Friday, a day after rough weather slammed the vessel on shore.  It spilled diesel fuel and other debris in the ocean.

So what hazards, if any, are in store for beachgoers?

The boat is still stuck along the break wall at Magic Island. The good news is the diesel fuel spill has been cleaned up by the boat's owner, but he now has to deal with a severely damaged vessel.

Thursday's pounding rain and strong winds turned the Pacific Ocean into a blender.  40-knot winds and 15-foot seas made conditions dangerous for boaters. 

This one: "The Sailvation," got tossed onto the Magic Island break wall.

"By the time we arrived here, it was up on the breakwater, breaking up literally," said Phil Long, a visitor who witnessed the accident.  "There's diesel oil now in the pool, and there's canisters of propane floating around."

It was a busy day for the U.S. Coast Guard and other agencies.

"We were scrambling a lot yesterday," said Meghan Statts, the Oahu district manager for the Department of Land and Natural Resources' Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation.  "We had a bunch of grounded boats, a lot of sunken boats."

Thursday was a bad time for boaters.

"But remember we had winds out of the south for the past day or two and that has kept everything on shore," said Lt. John Titchen, a U.S. Coast Guard spokesperson.  "In fact that's why the sailing vessel's come on shore."

A day later, it's still here, a bit more secure along the wall.  Its owner takes time to collect his belongings and move them to dry land.

Although conditions are calmer today, Coast Guard officials say the danger may not be over.

"One of the things that we have a problem with when we have a huge storm like this is debris in the water," said Titchen. "Logs, and anything that washes down from streams can be a hazard to boats."

And before the next huge storm hits, boaters should take extra safety precautions.

"If you're anchored out there, double up on your anchors, make sure all your lines are tied," said Statts. "And if you're not able to do that, take some safe harbor into one of the facilities."

The owner has until Monday to remove his boat from the break wall.  State officials recommend boaters get boat insurance because you never know when days like Thursday will come again.

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