Monarch located, response continuesNews // January 22, 2009
Monarch was located in 86ft of water not far from the platform.
The US Coast Guard says the crew of the motor vessel Champion, working with another vessel, located the offshore supply vessel Monarch 10ft from the southwest leg of the Granite Point oil platform, 16 miles from Nikiski in Cook Inlet, on January 17th. The vessel is in 86ft of water.
The dark line in the photo shown here is the centreline or trackline the side scan sonar follows while operating. The machine can not see directly underneath itself so the area appears black. The vessel is pictured with the bow at the top of the image and the stern at the bottom. The vessel appears to be rightside up, listing to starboard.
The Coast Guard said the tug Vigilant and the motor vessel Champion, equipped with sidescan sonar, located the vessel at about 10.20am on the 17th.
Additional scanning equipment is being mobilized to improve the quality of the sonar scan images.
The Unified Command with input from the salvage group is developing a plan to mark Monarch using a transponder.
A ribbon of non-recoverable sheen was observed during an over flight of the area approximately one mile northeast of the Granite Platform.
Monarch sank in the vicinity of the oil platform last week. All seven crew members were safely evacuated to the platform and then onto shore by commercial helicopter.
The Coast Guard is continuing to investigate the cause of the sinking.