Search Operations to Continue after Deadly Crash

Prayers to the families of the workers in this morning’s fatal crash involving the tugboat Specialist and a barge moored under the Tappan Zee Bridge that killed one person and left his two coworkers missing.

March 13th UPDATE: A second worker’s body was recovered by divers, who continue to search for the third victim.

None of the 13 workers aboard the barge were injured, Governor Andrew Cuomo said, calling the accident a tragedy. The state is actively working with law enforcement to locate those crew members and minimize the environmental damage caused by the tugboat’s diesel fuel leaking into the river, Cuomo said.

State DEC crews continue monitoring the oil spill cleanup and will remain there until it’s complete, Acting Commissioner Basil Seggos said.

Two other tugboats — Realist and Trevor — in formation with Specialist were not involved in the crash; the tugboat and crew were not part of the bridge project.

“Tappan Zee Constructors, LLC (TZC) is aware that a tugboat unrelated to the project struck one of our crane barges in the main channel as it was moving south early this morning, causing the tug to fully submerge,” spokeswoman Carla Julian said in a statement earlier today. “TZC is cooperating with local responders as the investigation and the recovery efforts continue.”

Days earlier I mentioned Safety Manager Daryl Lloyd reviewing safety protocol and practices with construction crews atop one of the new main span crossbeams.

The company takes safety seriously.

“If or when an incident occurs, no matter what the size, we will always use it as an opportunity to review and reassess our safety procedures and operations specific to the project,” TZC President Darrell Waters emphasized after one of the floating concrete batch plants failed.

A full investigation will be conducted, and more information will be provided as it becomes available, Cuomo said.

The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services’ Office of Emergency Management and Fire Prevention and Control continue to assist local, state and federal first responders, Commissioner John P. Melville said.

“Our divers are working now to determine the position of the sunken tug so a decision can be made on how recovery operations will proceed,” State Police Superintendent Joseph A. D’Amico said earlier today. The department has been working with local law enforcement, first responders and the U.S. Coast Guard since the accident was reported this morning.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2016

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