The Kulamanu was towed from Pier 6 at Honolulu Harbor on June 20, 2019. (Hawaii Department of Transportation photo)

Hawaii DOT Clearing Derelict Vessels from Honolulu Harbor

Three vessels that could have posed a risk of sinking during a severe storm recently have been removed, and others have been readied for removal.

Noting that NOAA has predicted a 70 percent increased chance of higher activity in the Pacific region during this hurricane season, the Hawaii Department of Transportation Harbors Division recently removed three derelict vessels from Honolulu Harbor that could have posed a risk of sinking during a severe storm. Others have been readied for removal, as well.

The agency reported that the Kulamanu, also known as the Windjammer, was towed June 20 and taken to Kalaeloa Harbor, where it will be prepared for disposal at sea. The fishing vessels Manaloa and Pacifica were towed from Pier 12 on June 6 and 7. The scope of services for the removal allows the contractor to dispose, recycle, or repurpose the vessels.

HDOT reported that the cost to remove all three vessels was $748,350. HDOT is working with the Office of the Attorney General Civil Recoveries Division to recoup delinquent fees and removal costs from the vessel owners and their insurance companies. "We have initiated steps to remove risks that could hamper the recovery of the harbors during the hurricane season," said Deputy Director Derek Chow of the HDOT Harbors Division. "Mariners need to know the HDOT will also pursue owners to the full extent of the law to recover the expenses incurred by the state."

The vessel Debra Ann has been sold to a new owner to be refurbished for use, and the owner of the vessel Laysan has paid the balance of its fees and removed the boat from Honolulu Harbor on his own. The division continues working toward the removal of the Falls of Clyde from Pier 7 at Honolulu Harbor, including the feasibility of towing the vessel in its present condition. The boat already has been prepped for disposal, with the engine, fluids, contaminants, and high masts previously removed. "The state continues to be open to responsible buyers. The Friends of Falls of Clyde are allowed to remove the vessel on its own, however we have not received confirmation of plans to safely remove the vessel or verification of funding from Falls of Clyde supporters," the agency reported.

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