The U.S. Coast Guard is moving forward with its plan to sink a derelict Japanese fishing vessel about 170 miles southwest of Sitka.
The Ryou-Un Maru has been adrift since last year’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan. It floated into U.S. waters on Saturday and has been moving in a northerly direction since first being noticed by the Canadian Coast Guard off the coast of Canada more than a week ago.
The operation to sink the boat was delayed when a fishing vessel began operating in the area. According to the Coast Guard, the vessel’s captain initially expressed interest in salvaging the ghost ship, but decided against it after getting a close-up look.
The Petersburg-based Coast Guard cutter Anacapa will now proceed with plans to sink the Ryou-Un Maru, using its 25-MM, bow-mounted machine gun.
Coast Guard officials say the boat poses a risk to other vessels should it continue to drift at sea.
- Plows cleared away slushy snow Saturday morning. But icy conditions persisted because state workers wanted to avoid using too much overtime. Budget cuts to the Alaska Department of Transportation will affect drivers for another winter.
- For the past three months, a magistrate judge based in Yakutat has covered Haines arraignments and other court proceedings. But this week, that changes.
- Alaska Airlines has won government approval to buy rival Virgin America after agreeing to reduce its flight-selling partnership with American Airlines.
- As the winter solstice approaches and daylight hours are short in Alaska, public safety, medical groups and other Alaska businesses are calling attention to pedestrian safety.