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Boat Movement Restricted Due to Bay Oil Spill; News of Sunken Sailboat during Baja Ha-Ha

By Janet Levaux
Friday, October 30th, 2009 at 9:06 pm in Uncategorized.

This week has been as colorful for the Bay as the sunset picture taken at Crown Memorial Beach in Alameda today at 6:48 p.m.

The birds were feeding nicely, and no oil had appeared, fortunately.

Exactly 12 hours earlier, the U.S. Coast Guard got news that the tanker Dubai Star had suffered a rupture in a fuel lines and released an unknown amount of fuel into San Francisco Bay about 2.5 miles south of the Bay Bridge.

Some 11,000 feet of boom was deployed to contain the spill more than three hours later. And the Coast Guard says that the no more fuel is leaking into the Bay.

The California Department of Fish and Game (DFG) activated the Oiled Wildlife Care Network to conduct wildlife search and reconnaissance operations. So far, there have been no reports of oiled wildlife, and volunteers have not been called into action yet.

Alameda residents active in the Bay Farm Nature Connection plan to volunteer as the need arises.

The public is asked to not attempt to rescue oiled wildlife, the Coast Guard says, as this may cause injury to both the individual and the animal. Instead the public should report sightings of oiled wildlife to 1-877-823-6926.

However, according to the Coast Guard, “Oil trajectory models predict potential shoreline impacts tonight starting this evening at North Alameda Island, Bay Farm Island, Yerba Buena Island and Treasure Island.”

Also, the Coast Guard is limiting the movement of boats in the Oakland Estuary, the Oakland Bar Channel and within the spill area.

We will continue to monitor this situation.

And in news about 700 miles south of the Bay, a boat owned by the J/World Sailing School is reported to have sunk after leaving San Diego and encountering a pod of whales.

J/World, which has facilities in Marina Village, participated in this year’s Baja Ha-Ha rally. The annual event includes about 200 sailboats this year – many from Alameda — traveling from San Diego to Cabo San Lucas from October 26-November 6.

On Tuesday, the San Diego Union Tribune reported that five people in a life raft had been rescued. And the sailing monthly Latitude 38 , which organizes the Baja Ha-Ha, says skipper Eugenie Russell and four crew members may have had only five minutes to get into the raft.

J/World opened its office in Alameda in 2002.

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