CHESHIRE — The United States Coast Guard responded to the sinking of a vessel near Cheshire on Friday.
According to a press release from the USCG on Friday afternoon, “Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Huntington received a report at 1 p.m. that the towing vessel Ed McLaughlin, owned by McGinnis Marine, capsized on the Ohio River at mile marker 259.
All three crewmembers that were aboard the vessel are accounted for and have been taken to a local hospital and were reported to be in stable condition.
There is an estimated 4,900 gallons of diesel fuel on board. Light sheening is reported to be around the vessel. Members from MSU Huntington are en route to the scene to determine if the vessel is leaking fuel and to provide initial assessments of potential environmental and waterway impacts.
The cause of the incident is under investigation.”
Later Friday evening, USCG Petty Officer Third Class Lexie Preston said though there is that “light sheening” around the vessel, at this time there appears to be no fuel actively discharging from the vessel.
Matt Gregg, director of the Mason County Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, said the USCG notified the National Response Center and that organization notified the local jurisdictions.
Gregg added, the Mason County DHSEM is now in “monitor mode” and has been in contact with Gallia County EMA, as both agencies work together to assist where needed.
Gregg also said the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection was contacted about the incident.
Beth Sergent is editor of Ohio Valley Publishing.