ANACORTES — A brand-new, 85-foot yacht that capsized in Anacortes Sunday during its maiden launch has been put upright in the water as officials investigate what caused it to tip over with six people on board.
Petty Officer 3rd Class Jordan Akiyama with the U.S. Coast Guard said an incident management team is investigating the capsize. Companies have been contracted to oversee the salvage efforts and to prevent environmental contamination. He said booms have been put in the water as a precaution but there is no sign the 120 gallons of diesel on board leaked.
The yacht, built by Northern Marine Industries in Anacortes, capsized Sunday night as it was being launched near 30th Street.
A half-dozen boat-builder personnel were on board and had to be rescued. No one was seriously injured.
Police Capt. Lou D’Amelio said the boat was getting launched for the first time around 9 p.m. Sunday when it began to roll onto its side in shallow water. As it began to roll, several people went into the engine room to adjust ballast.
The yacht continued to roll, and the engine room began to flood. Most of the workers on board were easily rescued, but one man was trapped inside.
Anacortes officer and Navy veteran Scott Ray used an ax to chop out a porthole and rescue the man, D’Amelio said. The man was treated for minor cuts and scrapes from being pulled through the opening.