GLYNN COUNTY, Ga. — The Coast Guard confirms reports of white smoke billowing from the Golden Ray cargo ship in St. Simons Sound on Sunday morning. Overflights and water-level salvage teams were sent out to investigate the cause of the smoke.
Altamaha Riverkeeper member Sue Inman said they were alerted to the smoke Sunday morning.
“We immediately called the Coast Guard, and they confirmed that they also got the same phone call and they’re acting upon that,” Inman said.
Coast Guard crews began spraying the capsized ship with water Sunday morning. Spectators came out to catch a glimpse of the smoking ship.
“Oh, it’s quite a sight!” Don Gunby said. "I was talking about the ship and [my wife] said, 'All I see is a building!'”
The Coast Guard reports more than 250,000 gallons of fuel have been removed from the Golden Ray's tanks and says it’s not possible to safely right and refloat the ship.
In turn, investigators are developing plans to get the ship out of the waterway by disassembling it. They say efforts to limit pollution will continue throughout removal process.
“This remains a complex situation, but additional information about the removal plan and the expected timeline will be shared with the public as and when available,” said the Unified Command in a release.
Inman tells Action News Jax they’re still monitoring the environmental impacts more than 40 days after the ship capsized.
“Every day it sits in the water is a concern and that’s their concern, too,” she said.
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