, Gloucester, MA


January 8, 2013

Osprey accident cries for answers

In the grand scheme of things, the spilling of 150 gallons of more of No. 2 heating oil hardly qualifies as an environmental nightmare.

Yet the running aground of the 108-foot herring trawler Osprey last week off Ten Pound Island within Gloucester’s Outer Harbor raises a number of red flags in terms of safety and safe operating policies, and now that the oil cleanup is complete, it’s important that the Coast Guard continue its investigation into just what went wrong last Wednesday night.

To the layman, it may seem surprising that there aren’t more such accidents within the close quarters of Gloucester’s Inner and Outer Harbor.

But the fact that such incidents are so rare cries out for answers as to just what was involved in the Osprey’s running astray in waters the locally-based Irish Venture Inc. vessel has negotiated so cleanly so many times before.

And it’s important that the Coast Guard, which has interviewed the three-member crew, expedite its ongoing investigation and issue a public report as to its findings.

Everyone is grateful that the spill and that the vessel’s accident itself wasn’t much more serious. But it’s an accident that still cries out for answers.

Let’s hope they’ll be forthcoming soon.

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