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#Kulluk Update #25: Unified Command Daily Summary - Jan. 6, 2013

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January 6, 2013
Map of Alaska highlighting Kodiak Island Borough
Map of Alaska highlighting Kodiak Island Borough (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Please note correction regarding community meetings:  The meeting with Kodiak officials scheduled for Sunday that was postponed due to the Russian Christmas holiday will be rescheduled when possible.  A community meeting at Old Harbor is scheduled for Monday, January 7.                       
Anchorage, AK – Unified Command’s daily activity report for Saturday, January 5, 2013.
  • The Kulluk continues to remain stable and upright
  • Weather conditions prevented the connection of a tow line to the Kulluk; efforts will continue as weather permits
  • Inspections of the vessel by the salvage team confirm there are no visible signs of a sheen
  • Unified Command confirmed the vessel is fit to tow
  • The recovery team is currently on board and will stay on board the Kulluk overnight
  • Booming activities are planned to resume once again at first light by field crews at sensitive areas in Ocean Bay, weather permitting
  • A safety zone of one nautical mile is still in effect around the Kulluk
  • A press conference was held earlier today at 2 pm. Some key comments and notes:
    • The meeting with Kodiak officials scheduled for Sunday that was postponed due to the Russian Christmas holiday will be rescheduled when possible.  A community meeting at Old Harbor is scheduled for Monday, January 7.
    •  “The exact timing of a potential towing activity will depend on weather, tides and operational readiness. Once Unified Command confirms that the operation is safe and ready to move forward, the recovery operation will begin. When that happens, we will provide that information.” – Incident Commander Churchfield
    • “Safety of the response personnel remains our number one priority. The very nature of the recovery operations and the difficult weather conditions must be managed without compromising safety. Our timeline is still difficult to nail down, but we are committed to seeing this response through to a safe conclusion. Understand that as recovery operations develop, it may be necessary to alter our plans to address new issues or concerns.” - Federal On-Scene Coordinator, USCG Captain Paul Mehler III
    • “Currently the Kulluk recovery operation does not pose an environmental threat that would preclude this fishery from opening.  Dept. of Environmental Conservation is consulting with the Dept. of Fish and Game on a regular basis to monitor any impact this operation may have on the Tanner Crab Fishery, and other commercial, subsistence and sport fisheries.” – State On-Scene Coordinator Steve Russell
    • “Throughout this response it has been important to Unified Command that they consider environmental concerns and cultural sensitivity in the recovery plan, to the greatest degree possible. Particular emphasis in the response has been to provide outreach and two-way communication with the communities of Old Harbor and Akhiok.” – Kodiak Island Local On-Scene Coordinator Duane Dvorak
  • There are six vessels on scene at the Kulluk and another eight en route to the Kulluk or harbors nearby. The Aiviq and the Nanuq are both on scene close by just outside the safety zone; The Perseverence, Alert, Ocean Wave and USCGC Alex Haley are also in the area.
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