National Fisherman


The U.S. Coast Guard's Pacific Strike Team, a cadre of specially-equipped guardsmen deployed to hazardous situations nationwide, are headed to southwest Alaska's Igushik River to help remove the sunken vessel Lone Star, which caused the closure of a commercial fishery.

The team, which includes some of the Coast Guard's top emergency responders, will help state and local response crews already on the river, said Lt. Jason Gangel, Coast Guard Sector Anchorage's chief of response.

The Pacific team is part of the guard's National Strike Force, which includes more than 200 active, civilian, rescue, reserve and auxiliary personnel. There are specific teams designated for the Pacific, Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico regions.

Last month, the Atlantic team help salvage the Marseilles Dam on the Illinois River after seven 200-foot barges containing steel coils, ore, concrete and chemicals broke free from a tugboat and rammed it. Typically, the team deals with released hazardous materials and oil spills.

The Atlantic team's counterpart should have few problems removing the 78-foot Lone Star. The vessel sank with a reported 35,000 pounds of fish, 14,000 gallons of diesel, 150 gallons of lube oil, 150 gallons of hydraulic fluid and 250 gallons of gasoline aboard.

The vessel capsized June 30 [3] after its anchor chain got caught in its tranductor line, damaging the hull. The accident closed commercial fisheries until July 1 -- but fishing was closed again on July 5, due to leaking fluid.

Read the full story at Alaska Dispatch>>

Inside the Industry

NOAA recently published a proposed rule that would implement a traceability plan to help combat IUU fishing. The program would seek to trace the origins of imported seafood by setting up reporting and filing procedures for products entering the U.S.

The traceability program would collect data on harvest, landing, and chain of custody of fish and fish products that have been identified as particularly vulnerable to IUU fishing and fraud.

Read more...

The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:

The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.

Read more...
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