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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

March 26, 2013 at 7:39 AM

Owner of derelict ship first in Washington to get federal prison term

Previous owner of vessel should bear some responsibility

The Davy Crockett was scrapped illegally in the Columbia River. Cleanup cost $22 million. The owner will serve a federal prison term. (STEVEN LANE / THE COLUMBIAN)

The Davy Crockett was scrapped illegally in the Columbia River. Cleanup cost $22 million. The owner will serve a federal prison term. (STEVEN LANE / THE COLUMBIAN)

It’s interesting to note that no mention is made of the previous owners of this vessel, in this case one of the largest construction companies in the U.S. [“Owner of derelict ship gets 4 months in prison,” page one, March 19].

I realize that large companies often register ownership of such vessels to an obscure second party in order to minimize liability, but should they not bear at least some responsibility to check that the scrap merchant to whom the vessel was sold (when no longer seaworthy or insurable) had the experience and financial wherewithal to dismantle and dispose of it in the proper manner?

With just a little due diligence it would have been apparent that Bret A. Simpson was not qualified and this debacle could have been avoided.

–Wayne Robinson, Roseburg, Ore.

Comments | More in Environment, Federal government, water

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