A floating West Coast Resorts lodge became unmoored from its anchoring buoy in Alliford Bay and ran aground on Lina Island Saturday night. (Andrew Hudson/Haida Gwaii Observer)

Several more days before salvage of barge can begin on Haida Gwaii

The barge and lodge broke away from their moorings in high winds on Sept. 8 and ran aground.

Responders say the potentially dangerous work of removing cargo from a grounded barge on Haida Gwaii will continue for several more days.

Emptying the vessel has been complicated by seawater that flooded into part of the breached hull of the barge, which carries the Hippa Lodge, a 48-guest luxury fishing resort.

The barge and lodge broke away from their moorings in high winds on Sept. 8 and ran aground on the east coast of Haida Gwaii near the village of Queen Charlotte.

There was concern that a ruptured fuel line had filled the hold with possibly explosive gas vapour and a news release from the Unified Command says unloading the cargo requires careful planning and implementation. Unified Command involves the Haida Nation, HaiCo, BC Ministry of Environment, Village of Queen Charlotte, and the Canadian Coast Gaurd

The coast guard, Environment Ministry, resort owner HaiCo and other experts are considering how to complete the unloading and begin salvaging the barge.

No pollution has been detected but officials say the barge is being monitored closely to ensure safety and protection of the environment and surrounding culturally significant areas.

Related: Crews testing for gas vapours in grounded Haida Gwaii barge

Related: Fishing boat ‘Haida Legend’ sinks off Langara Island

The Canadian Press

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Correction: This story has been updated to reflect the fact that the news release was published by Unified Command, not the Haida Nation.

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