Abandoned fishing boat poses threat to water near Ballard Locks

SEATTLE -- The Coast Guard is working to keep what is believed to be an abandoned fishing boat from sinking and polluting a marina near the Ballard Locks after more than 12 feet of oily water was discovered on board.

On Wednesday, the Coast Guard received a call stating the 133-foot, steel-hulled boat known as the Crest appeared to be taking on water at the Ballard Oil Company Marina.

Working with Global Diving and Salvage, Coast Guard crews responded and have so far removed more than 29,000 gallons of the oily water mixture from the boat.

A spokesperson for the Coast Guard said it appears water started coming through the propeller shaft into the engine room, possibly due to aging or loose packing material in the shaft.

As of Friday morning, response crews have been able to keep the oily mixture from leaking or spilling into the water.

Officials are working to determine who owns the boat as well as checking all the tanks on board to see if any fuel remains inside.

The Coast Guard has contacted the Department of Natural Resources and the Washington State Department of Ecology, putting both agencies on notice should they need to respond.