Lesson Learned: Galveston Bay Oil Spill (Houston Ship Channel) from barge and container ship collision on March 22, 2014.
What can be done to prevent a similar accident from happening again?
Below is a summary of the incident for information:
- A statement released by the U.S. Coast Guard to the Houston Chronicle has provided some new insight into the moments leading up to the March 22 “Texas Y” collision in the Houston Ship Channel, causing some 168,000 gallons of a heavy bunker fuel to spill into the channel and Gulf of Mexico.
- A Houston pilot onboard the inbound MV Summer Wind bulk carrier warn the captain of the Kirby Inland towboat, MV Miss Susan, which was pushing barges carrying nearly 1 million gallons of oil, as it tried to cross the busy Texas Y intersection ahead of the bulk carrier.
- “I’m looking at everything. I’m fixing to start to cross the intersection down to Bolivar. How do I look to you?” the Miss Susan captain said.
- “Well, if you keep on going I’m going to get you,” a Houston pilot aboard the Summer Wind responded. “Because right now I’m about three quarters of a mile from you and you haven’t got to the channel yet.”
- “All right, well (expletive). I’m glad I called,” replied the Miss Susan’s captain. And it goes on from there.
- The MV Summer Wind struck the lead barge, breaching a tank and resulting in what has been called Texas’ worst inland oil spill in decades.