A special Coast Guard pollution response vessel formerly stationed at the now shut down Kits Coast Guard base is not being used to help out with the English Bay oil spill.
Former Kits Coast Guard commander Fred Moxey says it is sitting on the dock at Richmond’s Sea Island base.
“Once they shut the station down they put it up on the dock. I believe the crew are up in Prince Rupert at the moment. I am not 100% sure.”
Moxey says only a coast guard rubber boat can respond to the spill as the Osprey stationed at Kits was taken offline. .
“The vessel when they closed the station down they stripped the motors out of the boat and then they sold the vessel.”
Moxey says the Richmond base has a lack of assets at its fingertips to respond to fuel or oil spills.
“The hovercraft is not really designed to respond to an oil spill. They do not have a conventional vessel there like the Osprey that they had at Kits. They do have an oopen rubber boat that they use. I believe that was on scene last night sometime about eleven o’clock.”
He says it would have taken crews at Kits base six minutes to respond to the situation.
Coast Guard crews from Richmond’s Sea Island base took nine hours to get a boom in place around the oil slick.