Crane Removal of Grounded Baidarka Boat to Begin
By Wendy Osher
Efforts to remove a grounded boat on a reef near Lahaina Small Boat Harbor will begin tomorrow (Saturday, June 23, 2012), according to state officials.
The 35-foot Baidarka sailboat from Victoria, Canada, went aground earlier this week after it broke free from its mooring at the Lahaina Yacht Club on either Sunday evening, June 17, or Monday morning, June 18, 2012.
State officials say removal efforts will start tomorrow morning, and are advising recreational ocean users to stay clear of the removal operation.
“We are asking surfers, paddlers and other ocean users to keep well away from the boat and nearshore areas during salvage operations, for their safety and that of the salvage workers,” said Nicholas Giaconi, DOBOR Maui district boating manager.
The boat’s owner has hired Parker Marine, a salvage company, to remove the vessel for disposal. Costs associated with the removal will be covered by vessel insurance company, Progressive Insurance.
State officials say Parker Marine will secure heavy lines to the vessel and its mast, and by afternoon begin pulling them in with a winch to the nearby Kamehameha Iki beach park.
To prevent further damage to the offshore coral reef, Parker Marine plans to move the boat to shore with successive high tides and lift it up with a crane onto a flat bed truck to haul away, according to state officials with the DLNR. Work may continue through the weekend.
Earlier this week, PENCO was hired by the owner to remove an estimated 150 gallons of fuel, under DOBOR and Coast Guard monitoring.
Following the removal aquatic biologists with the Division of Land and Natural Resources will survey the grounding site to assess any possible damage to the reef.
DLNR Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement officers will be on hand during the salvage operation to monitor the ocean areas. Maui Police Department officers will also monitor the beach park area for public safety.