The captain of a Seattle water taxi swooped in to divert disaster late last week when high winds and rough seas ripped a container barge free from its moorings at the city’s dock. The barge floated across the bay and was heading directly for Seattle’s waterfront before the water taxi captain sprung into action and used his boat to push the barge away from danger.
Captain Dan Krehbiel was at the helm of King County water taxi the MV Doc Maynard when he saw the rogue container barge floating across Elliott Bay in Seattle on Thursday, reports local news station King5. After spotting the loose vessel heading straight toward the area that housed Seattle’s Waterfront Park, the aquarium and the Seattle Great Wheel, Krehbiel made a beeline for the barge.
Using the power of his vessel, Krehbiel was able to push the 300-foot barge off course and away from the busy area. Krehbiel used his water taxi’s bow to push and direct the massive barge north and towards the vacant Pier 66, where it landed before being held in place by tugs that arrived on the scene. King5 News reports:
King County Metro general manager Michelle Allison praised the actions of capt. Krehbiel, the crew and the Doc Maynard.
“We’re very proud of our captain and crew,” said Allison. “They recognized the danger this loose barge represented and then took quick action to protect people and the busy Seattle waterfront.”
No injuries were reported following the incident and no damage appears to have been made to the water taxi, but local news reports that services were delayed by 15 minutes. Officials in Seattle are still assessing the pier where the barge ended up for damage, as it crashed with the concrete facade with some force.
The barge, which was reportedly loaded up with empty shipping containers, was operated by Alaska Marine Lines. In a statement, the shipping company said that high winds pulled it loose from its moorings. Investigators are now looking into the damage that was caused by the rogue vessel.