Thursday, February 10, 2005

3 Dead, 1 Missing After Tug Boat Sinks

A tug boat sank on the Ohio River, killing three crew members. One person was missing and believed to be aboard the submerged boat. Six crew members aboard the Elizabeth M. were rescued, and two of them were taken to a hospital, said Thomas Llewellyn, fire chief in Industry. The tug was headed north pushing six barges of coal when it went through the flood gates at the Montgomery Dam shortly after 2:30 a.m. and was apparently pushed by strong currents against the dam, Llewellyn said. "He was shoving out of Montgomery lock and dam and something happened we have no idea and the boat went over the dam," said Don Grimm, president of tug owner Campbell Transportation Co. Two other tugs arrived to help in the rescue, pulling four people from the water and two from the boat, Llewellyn said. The missing crew member was believed to still be on the boat, which was almost completely covered by water. Further attempts to reach that person would have to wait until the waters recede somewhat, he said. "The water is just absolutely too high. You can't do anything," Llewellyn said. Andrew Harman, the Captain of a different tow boat who drove by to observe the submerged vessel, said he knew a pilot who worked on the boat but doesn't know what happened to the man. "The only thing sticking out of the water right now is the pilot house," said Harman. The Coast Guard was expected to arrive later in the day. Industry is about 25 northwest of Pittsburgh.
The pilot house of the tug boat Elizabeth M. by the gates of the Montgomery Island Dam on the Ohio River at Industry, Pa.

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