FV Aleutian Falcon fire

(Information on this site is considered to be accurate at the time of posting, but is subject to change as new information becomes available.)

Ecology is responding to a vessel fire on the Fishing Vessel Aleutian Falcon, owned by Trident Seafoods. The vessel is moored near the Blair and Hylebos Waterways, by the Port of Tacoma.

Summary information

Date of incident: February 18, 2021
Location:

Blair and Hylebos Waterways, by the Port of Tacoma.

(map)
Type of incident: TBD
Cause of incident:
Responsible party:
FV Aleutian Falcon on fire

The FV Aleutian Falcon on fire near the Port of Tacoma.

Status updates

Monday, February 22, 2021 -- 7:00 p.m.

The fire was declared officially extinguished at 1:00 p.m. today. 

Salvage teams continued to work on dewatering the vessel throughout the day, which improved the vessel list.  Vacuum trucks also remain on scene to remove water as necessary.

With the fire extinguished, smoke generation has ceased and the need for Community Air Monitoring is no longer present at this time. We will continue to have air monitoring resources on site in the event of a flare up, ammonia release, or diesel spill.

There remains no indication that the 48,500 gallons of diesel stored in on-board tanks has been released. Light oil sheen within the boomed area has decreased dramatically today. No sheening has been observed outside of the boomed area. On-water oil spill response vessels remain on the water and ready to respond.

Image of FV Aleutian Falcon after the fire was extinguished.

FV Aleutian Falcon after fire was extinguished.

Sunday, February 21, 2021 -- 8:00 p.m.

The fire is declared “controlled” as of 2:00 p.m. There are still several smoldering fire locations that will need to be extinguished before the fire is declared “out.” 

Heavy equipment and debris were removed from upper decks which continued to improve the vessel stability. Additional water has been removed from the upper decks. Vacuum trucks remain on scene to remove water as necessary. The list of the vessel has improved. 

Ecology continues air monitoring efforts, and all measurements remain within background levels.

There remains no indication that the 48,000 gallons of diesel stored in on-board tanks has been released. There is still light oil sheen within the boomed area around the vessel. No sheening has been observed outside of the boomed area.  

Saturday, February 20, 2021 -- 7:30 p.m.

The fire is still burning in the interior of the vessel. However, responders have been able to enter the interior and significant fire suppression progress has been made in both the bow and stern of the vessel.

Tacoma Fire has demobilized all personnel from the incident and formally transferred command to Unified Command Consisting of Ecology, the USCG, and Trident/ECM.

Dewatering efforts continue in order to not overload the vessel with water. Approximately 2,500 gallons of water was removed by vacuum truck today and additional vacuum trucks remain on scene to assist with removing water as necessary. With dewatering efforts, the vessel's listing has corrected. 

The ammonia remains on board the vessel and is an area not currently threatened by the fire. 

Community air monitoring continues. No chemicals of concern have been detected and particulate remains at background levels. With the reduced potential for air quality concerns, EPA's air monitoring resources are being released from the response.  Ecology has identical air monitoring capability on scene and will deploy these resources if necessary.

There is no indication that the 48,000 gallons of diesel stored in on-board tanks have been released. Light oil sheen within the boomed area around the vessel continues to be observed.  Frequent observations for oil sheen outside of the boomed area are being made by boat and drone and only minor sheening has been observed outside of the boomed area.  On-water oil spill response vessels remain on the water and ready to respond.

Friday, February 19, 2021 -- 5:30 p.m.

The fire is still burning on the vessel, but responders were able to enter the vessel and onfirm that the fire is confined to the forward area of the vessel and there is no fire in the aft. The team was able to remove chlorine tanks and several other hazardous substance storage tanks. The ammonia and fuel have not been removed yet. Containing the fire and maintaining the stability of the vessel are top priorities. 

Water is still being applied to the hull and deck of the vessel to cool them down. The vessel is also being dewatered to maintain the stability of the vessel and reduce the listing. 

The smoke has diminished, but is still present. Air monitoring continued through the day with no concerning levels detected. 

Responders boarding the FV Aleutian Falcon.

A group of firefighters boarding the FV Aleutian Falcon.

Friday, February 19, 2021 -- 8:30 a.m.

The fire is ongoing, and there is still noticeable smoke from the vessel. 

No oil has been observed in the water, and there is no indication that the fuel tanks or hazardous substance tanks have been compromised. 

Air monitoring continued through the night and will continue today. No ammonia or chlorine was detected by air monitors overnight, and total particulates remain at background levels. 

The U.S. Coast Guard lifted the 1500 yard safety zone at midnight last night. 

Thursday, February 18, 2021 -- 5:00 p.m.

The fire is still burning at this time. The dewatering plan is being deploy with vacuum trucks to reduce the list and stabilize the vessel so that Tacoma Fire can safely continue fighting the fire in earnest. Drone observations are still detecting hotspots on the deck, but they are on a different part of the deck from where the hazardous substance tanks for chlorine and ammonia are stored. There is no indication that these storage tanks have been compromised.

The Coast Guard intends to maintain the 1500 yard safety perimeter.

Commercial port traffic has been allowed to resume.

Air monitoring will continue this evening. No monitoring results have indicated action levels for toxics in the air.

Thursday, February 18, 2021 -- 1:00 p.m.

 The shelter in place smoke advisory has been lifted for NE Tacoma.

Ecology continues to monitor smoke impacts alongside our partners at EPA. No readings have shown a level of concern. 

Responders are looking to dewater the vessel to alleviate the listing. 

A map showing the location of air monitoring units

This map shows the location of Ecology and EPA's air monitoring units. 

Thursday, February 18, 2021 -- 8:12 a.m.

Our responders remain on scene. There is a slight sheen in the water, contained within boom, that comes from the liquids kept on the vessel that washed overboard with firefighting water. A contractor is en route with additonal boom. 

Air monitoring remains in place and has not detected anything that would be at a level of concern. 

Thursday, February 18, 2021 -- 7:34 a.m.

The fire is ongoing, and Ecology Spills is mobilizing our community air monitoring resources along with EPA. No air monitors have detected anything at a level of concern. 

F/V Aleutian Falcon fire incident as of February 18, 2021

F/V Aleutian Falcon fire incident on the morning of February 18, 2021.

Thursday, February 18, 2021 -- 4 a.m.

The fire is still burning. Hazards on the vessel include 98,000 pounds of ammonia, 200 pounds of chlorine, and 48,000 gallons of diesel. The vessel is boomed and listing. No oil is observed in the water.

Thursday, February 18, 2021 -- 12:30 a.m.

Ecology is responding to a fire on the Fishing Vessel Aleutian Falcon, a fishing vessel owned by Trident Seafoods. There is an estimated 48,000 gallons of fuel on board.

Fire is responding from both the land and water side. The vessel was pre-boomed, and there are no signs of oil in the water. A response contractor is on the way in the event oil does get into the water. The vessel is starting to list, and other vessels near the fire were moved as a precaution.

Media contact

Ty Keltner, Communications, ty.keltner@ecy.wa.gov, 360-515-6868, @EcologyWA