Unified Command Continues St. Simons Sound Incident Response: Update 25

Date: 10.12.19

Contact: Joint Information Center (912) 944-7122


Unified Command has completed the lightering o
f the forward fuel oil tanks onboard the M/V Golden Ray. More than  225,000 gallons of fuel have been removed to date. Lightering of the remaining fuel and lubricant tanks continues. 

Maritime experts engaged in the response have determined that it is not possible to safely right and refloat the vessel in a fully intact condition. Consequently, Unified Command is developing plans to remove all of the M/V Golden Ray’s hull, components, and cargo by disassembling the vessel in place. This remains a complex situation but additional information about the removal plan and the expected timeline will be shared with the public as and when available. 

Pollution mitigation and response efforts will continue throughout the duration of the removal operation. 

Unified Command’s priorities are ensuring the safety of responders and the public, protecting the environment, and completing a full removal of the vessel. All parties involved in the response are fully committed to the successful completion of these operations.  

Specialists from the Unified Command are conducting water monitoring at 22 sites under a long term plan to ensure the safety of the public. The Georgia Department of Health has issued a swimming and fishing advisory, and members of the public are encouraged to visit the Georgia Department of Public Health website or call (844) 863-0325 for further public health information and advisories. 

Members of the public should not touch oil or attempt to rescue oiled birds or wildlife. They should instead report any sightings of oil to (800) 424-8802 and report any oiled wildlife to (800) 261-0980

A claims number has been established for those affected by the incident (888) 850-8486.