Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

Fishing Boat Runs Aground near Estero Bluffs State Park

Coast Guard Removes Oil and Other Hazardous Materials from Stricken Craft

 

August 3, 2017

The commercial fishing vessel, Point Estero, rests on a group of rocks after it ran aground at Estero Bluffs State Park, Calif., July 28, 2017. Approximately 91 gallons of fuel and oil were removed along with 2.5 cubic yards of contaminated material U.S. Coast Guard photo.

A fishing boat named Point Estero ran aground July 31st at Point Estero in SLO county. Call it destiny in a name. The Coast Guard and other agencies became concerned that oil and other toxic materials could leak from the stricken craft, and endanger local wildlife.

The Coast Guard and partner agencies completed the removal of oil and hazardous materials from a grounded commercial fishing vessel near Estero Bluffs State Park Tuesday afternoon.

Removal operations of the Point Estero were completed at approximately 12:30 p.m., which resulted in the recovery of 91 gallons of oil and 2.5 cubic yards of hazardous materials.

Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach watchstanders were notified Friday at approximately 6:00 a.m., that the Point Estero ran aground and requested assistance.

Personnel from Coast Guard Marine Safety Detachment in Santa Barbara responded Friday and observed no oil pollution in the water.

A Unified Command was established between the Coast Guard, California Department of Fish and Wildlife's Office of Spill Prevention and Response and California State Parks.

The Coast Guard hired contractors to remove all identified oil and hazardous materials aboard the Point Estero.

Estero Bluffs State Park is located in San Luis Obispo County, about 200 miles North of Santa Monica. The park protects a grassland-dominated marine terrace that slopes from California State Route 1 to the Pacific Ocean. The property is crossed by San Geronimo and Villa Creeks and is just north of the town of Cayucos. The 353-acre park was established in 2000.

Estero Bluffs has intertidal areas, wetlands, low bluffs, and coastal terraces punctuated by a number of perennial and intermittent streams and containing a pocket cove and beach at Villa Creek. The park provides habitat for a number of endangered species, including the snowy plover.

The park is made up of a coastline that stretches over 4 miles and covers more than 300 acres of land. Though the shoreline is usually no more than 300 yards away from the highway, the intentional lack of development of the land has left it very similar to its natural state.

Estero Bluffs features a variety of scenic sites along its coast. Visitors can park and see San Geronimo Creek or Villa Creek, which are small lagoons that are present year-round and filled by a constantly running creek. There are also multiple lookout points, including Cayoucos Point, Estero Bay.

 

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