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Lady Barbara Sinks
A stinky harbor. Vessel may be raised Thursday
January 17, 2013
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day after the 71-foot fishing trawler, Lady Barbara, sank at a dock on the Oriental harbor, its owner arrived in Oriental. Ralph Taylor spent several hours Wednesday trying to right his 34-year old wooden boat. He was not able to.

lady barbara
The Lady Barbara alongside the dock at Garland Fulcher Seafood on Wednesday afternoon.

Sherrill Styron, who owns the Garland Fulcher Seafood docks where the Lady Barbara sank on Tuesday, says that Taylor will try again on Thursday to get the trawler on to an even keel. That has to be done before another big task can begin – pumping out the water – so that the 71-foot trawler can once again float.

lady barbara
Lady Barbara, listed and with water over its foredeck at the Garland Fulcher Seafood docks Wednesday morning, the day after it sank. The boat is registered in Marshallberg – in Carteret County – though its owner Ralph Taylor has kept it at the Garland Fulcher Seafood docks since late last year, along with his other trawler, Miss Melissa.

Styron says that once it is floating again, Taylor has pledged to get the trawler out of Oriental’s harbor. Styron expects Taylor to tow the trawler to Jarrett Bay boat yard, down Adams Creek. Sherrill Styron says he has asked Taylor since last fall for to take his boat away from the docks in Oriental.

Sinking and Spilling

While the heeled-over Lady Barbara was drawing attention on Wednesday, so were the strong-smelling fluids that escaped her hull. .

As water poured into the boat Tuesday and caused it to sink, those fluids – smelling like a petroleum-based product – poured out. While waiting for the trawler’s owner to show up on Tuesday, Sherrill Styron says he laid booms around the Lady Barbara to capture the pollutants.

The booms retained some of the fluids, but not all. That became quickly apparent Wednesday morning as southwest winds and pushed a slurry — looking in some places like spilled Strawberry Quik — to the Oriental Town Dock and wharf.

Ribbons of the pink pollutant, collecting in the northernmost corner of the Oriental harbor, around the corner of the Garland Fulcher docks from where the Lady Barbara sank.

The pollution could also be detected south of the sinking — at Oriental Yacht Club and, on the Smith Creek side of the Oriental bridge, at slips beyond the Wildlife ramp. But it was the Oriental harbor that saw the most, especially along the wharf.

By midday, absorbent pads were deployed on some of the areas of the slurry. The pads absorbed some of the Lady Barbara’s spillage, but did little to reduce the petroleum-based smell which hung over parts of downtown Oriental downwind of the harbor. Winds were blowing out of the south-southwest Wednesday, keeping the slurry — and the smell — in the harbor.

Absorbent pads deployed in one corner of the Oriental harbor.

Just ahead, more photos of sunk Lady Barbara and the resulting spill.

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Posted Thursday January 17, 2013 by Melinda Penkava

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