Contractors for the state Department of Ecology investigate a sunken sailboat Aug. 20 on the Snohomish River. (Joey Thompson /Herald file)

Contractors for the state Department of Ecology investigate a sunken sailboat Aug. 20 on the Snohomish River. (Joey Thompson /Herald file)

State working to seize sunken sailboat in Snohomish River

Officials say this isn’t the owner’s first derelict vessel, with others in Poulsbo, Bainbridge Island.

EVERETT — The state is acting fast to rid the Snohomish River of another unwanted junk boat.

The state Department of Natural Resource’s Derelict Vessels Removal Program issued a notice on Tuesday to seize a second sunken boat north of the Langus Park boat launch, program manager Troy Wood said.

The owner has until Sept. 30 to take responsibility for the 50-foot sailboat before the state takes custody.

Wood said the owner has been involved with derelict boats in the past: one in Poulsbo and another near Bainbridge Island.

“That’s why we started the custody process as soon as we could,” he said.

To remove the sailboat, contractors are confident they could re-float and tow it out of the river, Wood said. But, a large storm between now and Sept. 30 could force them to use a crane to put it on a barge.

Either method would take about three weeks, Wood said. The project’s cost could be between $60,000 to $100,000.

The DNR has a biennial budget for removing boats, but will work to recover expenses from the owner.

Last week, the state Department of Ecology sent contractors to the sailboat after a sheen formed around it.

Department spokesman Larry Altose said the team from Global Diving and Salvage removed all hazardous materials from the boat, but couldn’t determine the amount of fuel that spilled into the river.

“Even a small amount like that can float out of submerged vents and cover a sizable area of water,” Altose said in an email Wednesday. “That still adds toxic pollution to the water, even when we don’t know the amount or it’s a probably small amount that’s spread out too thin for oil spill cleanup pads to pick up any of it.”

While the DNR waits to take custody of the sailboat, the program is closer to getting rid of another abandoned boat.

The Midas is a 100-foot fishing vessel sunk about half a mile up the river. It’s been stuck in local waters for more than a year. The DNR took custody on Aug. 14 and recently signed a contract with a company that will start the removal process in the next few weeks.

Earlier this summer, a deteriorating houseboat was dismantled and removed from the river.

Two other boats are being monitored by the DNR, but are of low risk to local waters.

Derelict boats can be reported online at the DNR’s website.

Joey Thompson: 425-339-3449; jthompson@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @byjoeythompson.

More in Local News

Anti-noise group seeks halt to Growlers at Coupeville field

Naval Air Station Whidbey Island is in the process of increasing training flights by 400 percent.

photos by Dan Bates / The Herald 
                                WSDOT spokeswoman Diane Rhodes talks with reporters and photojournalists at the passenger terminal under construction at Mukilteo on Thursday.
Passenger building offers glimpse of Mukilteo ferry terminal

The new facility connecting Mukilteo and Whidbey Island is expected to open in October or November.

County seeks federal aid after recent floods and landslides

If your home or business was damaged, you could help the state qualify for disaster assistance.

Separate suspected DUI, hit-and-run crashes hospitalize 4

Emergency responders were busy Saturday night after three collisions across Lynnwood.

Looking back: 1930s WPA project transformed Forest Park

A public works program is responsible for much of what exists today.

A new $20 shuttle begins runs from Monroe to Stevens Pass

Overcrowded parking in the ski area and heavy traffic on U.S. 2 prompted the new weekend service.

Marysville Little League president sentenced for theft

A forensic audit found Leo Carlos, 50, could not account for more than $71,000 of league money.

Everett’s new passenger terminal gets some national love

Paine Field was voted 8th-best among a selection of small airports, some of which aren’t all that small.

Bus stop locations chosen for safety and convenience

A reader wondered why so many bus stops are on the far side of an intersection. It’s on purpose.

Most Read