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May 21, 2014 at 9:10 AM

Yacht pulled upright; sinking cause unknown

By Russell Hixson
Skagit Valley Herald

(Photo by Scott Terrell / Skagit Valley Herald)

(Photo by Scott Terrell / Skagit Valley Herald)

ANACORTES — A new 85-foot yacht that capsized in Anacortes during its maiden launch has been put upright in the water as officials investigate what caused it to tip over Sunday with six people on board.
Petty Officer 3rd Class Jordan Akiyama with the U.S. Coast Guard said an incident management team is investigating.

Companies have been contracted to oversee the salvage efforts and to prevent environmental contamination.

He said booms have been put in the water as a precaution, but there is no sign that any of the 120 gallons of diesel on board leaked.

The yacht, built by Northern Marine Industries in Anacortes, capsized Sunday night as it was being launched near 30th Street.

A half-dozen boat-builder personnel were on board and had to be rescued. No one was seriously injured.

Police Capt. Lou D’Amelio said the boating was getting launched for the first time around 9 p.m. Sunday when it began to roll onto its side in shallow water. As it began to roll, several people went into the engine room to adjust ballast.

The yacht continued to roll, and the engine room began to flood.

Most of the workers on board were easily rescued, but an officer used an ax to widen a porthole to rescue one man who was trapped inside. That man was treated for minor cuts and scrapes.

Comments | More in General news | Topics: Anacortes, cause, rolled over

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