Crews raise boat that sank at marina

The Top Notch, a wood vessel built in 1925, sank this weekend at the Railway Marina.  - Brett Cihon
The Top Notch, a wood vessel built in 1925, sank this weekend at the Railway Marina.
— image credit: Brett Cihon

Divers worked Monday to raise an 85-foot boat that sank late Saturday at the Railway Marina, causing a diesel spill on the Port Orchard waterfront.

Initial reports indicate that an internal valve severed, causing the boat to fill with water, Eric Muller of Ballard Diving & Salvage said.

The Top Notch, a wood vessel built in 1925, sank with about 300 gallons of diesel fuel on board, and federal, state and private responders deployed oil containment boom Sunday around the area where the boat sank to keep approximately 50 gallons of fuel from spreading further into the marina, according to a news release from the state Department of Ecology and the U.S. Coast Guard. They also put out absorbent pads to collect oil on the water.

Ecology, Coast Guard, NRC Environmental Services and Ballard Diving & Salvage were on scene Monday to raise the Top Notch and safely pump out any remaining fuel, according to the news release. They also conducted a flight over the area to determine if any oil has gotten outside the marina.

The boat showed no signs of sinking as late as Friday night, Railway Marina harbormaster Rick Williams said Monday.

"I made my rounds on Friday night and everything looked fine," Williams said. "Then I got a call from the Coast Guard on Sunday morning telling me that it sunk."

A thin film of unrecoverable fuel was visible Monday in Sinclair Inlet.

This is the second time in less than a week a boat moored at the marina has sunk. A 45-foot wood Chris Craft was submerged last weekend after rainfall collected in the bow of the boat. The Chris Craft was raised earlier this week.

Photo courtesy of Ballard Diving & Salvage

Curt Hart of the Department of Ecology said the marina attempted to contact the owners of the Top Notch on Sunday but were unsuccessful.



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