The Canadian Coast Guard provided a final update today on the cargo ship vessel fire and loss of containers off the coast of Vancouver Island.
To recap, in October, cargo containers on the MV Zim Kingston vessel were lost in the rough seas off Vancouver Island.
Although original reports estimated 30 to 40 containers had gone overboard, later reports indicated the number was closer to 110 lost at sea.
A couple days later, while the vessel was anchored off Esquimalt, a large fire began in one of the containers that continued to burn for several days destroying multiple shipping containers.
For several weeks, the MV Zim Kingston was anchored 4.7 nautical miles from shore of Vancouver Island with a one nautical mile emergency zone surrounding the vessel.
The Canadian Coast Guard and Transport Canada worked to investigate the cause of the onboard fires as well as missing cargo containers.
Now, a final update has been issued by the Canadian Coast Guard regarding the location of these missing cargo containers as well as clean up efforts.
The MV Zim Kingston has been cleared to depart and will transit north today to the Port of Nanaimo. Once arrived, the ship will fall under the jurisdiction of the Nanaimo Port Authority (NPA).
According to reports, four containers in total were found beached on Vancouver Island. There continues to be no sign of the other 105 containers, but they are believed to have sunk.
The identified beaches on Vancouver Island where debris from the incident washed ashore are now reported to be clean.
In total, the incident caused approximately 27,360 kilograms of debris to clutter Vancouver Island beaches, which have now been cleaned.
According to reports, this weight estimate does not include the five waste bins still in the field or debris at Jurassic Point, which is in the process of being cleared.
The Canadian Coast Guard will continue to work with the ship’s owner to investigate possible next steps and the possibility of locating the 105 missing containers.
The ship owner will also be required to check the known accumulation sites for debris every few months. The Canadian Coast Guard will also monitor for debris when conducting flights over West Vancouver Island.
Anyone who does come across marine debris or washed up cargo containers is asked to report their findings to the 1-800-889-8852 reporting line.