A photo of the Gitga’at Guardian vessel in 2012. The emergency response boat ran aground in Klewnuggit Inlet on Sunday, May 6, 2018 at approximately 4:15 p.m. (Morley Eldridge photo)

Gitga’at Guardian runs aground

Gitga’at Emergency Response team manager says the matter is under an internal investigation

Gitga’at Nation vessel, Gitga’at Guardian, ran aground in Klewnuggit Inlet on Sunday, May 6, at approximately 4:15 p.m.

A Coast Guard vessel called another rescue vessel from the area, Gitga’at Scout, to pick up the four people on board and bring them to Hartley Bay, confirmed the Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre (JRCC) in Victoria.

Details about on how the vessel ran aground, and if anyone was injured, have not been officially released.

“The incident is under investigation, and once our investigation is complete then more details will be provided,” said Roger Sterritt, manager of the Gitga’at Emergency Response team.

READ MORE: Gitga’at make a permanent space for members in Prince Rupert

The Gitga’at Guardian belongs to the Guardian Watchman program in Hartley Bay, and is used as a survey vessel, and for emergency training.

Sterritt said the vessel was not on an emergency response at the time of the incident.

At 11 p.m. Sunday night, JRCC ended its operation and the Coast Guard’s environmental response unit took over on Monday.

“The situation is being monitored, and there is no pollution at this time. The Canadian Coast Guard is in contact with the Gitga’at on this issue, and the CCG ship Gordon Reid is standing by in Klewnuggit Inlet to monitor the fuel transfer and assist if necessary,” said Susan Williams, communications advisor for the Coast Guard, in an email.

RCMP are also investigating the event.

READ MORE: Gitga’at First Nation partners with WWF Canada

More to come.


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