HONOLULU, NOV. 7 -- A 730-foot tanker carrying more than 10 million gallons of oil products ran onto a reef and was aground for nearly 11 hours before tugboats freed it in a rising tide today, authorities said. There was no immediate sign of a spill.
A pump room of the single-hull Star Connecticut took on 15 feet of water in the accident Tuesday night, but the flooding was controlled and a Coast Guard helicopter lowered pumps to the ship, said Lt. Kent Youel, a Coast Guard spokesman.
The ship ran aground a mile south of Barbers Point, about 10 miles west of Honolulu. The Star Connecticut, owned by Texaco, had just left the Orion Independence refinery at Barbers Point, Youel said.
After it was freed this morning, commercial divers checked the underside of the ship for damage, Youel said. Their findings would determine where the ship would be taken, he said.
The Coast Guard's main goal was to unload the various types of oil totaling about 250,000 barrels from the ship as quickly as possible, Youel said.
The grounding is near where another tanker, the Exxon Houston, broke free from its offshore mooring in 1989, ran aground and spilled 33,000 gallons of oil that fouled the shore.