Commercial fishing in Igushik again closed due to fuel spill from F/V Pacific Knight

The F/V Pacific Knight sank Wednesday near Clark’s Point. (Photo courtesy of Mike Jones)

Fuel from the wreckage of the F/V Pacific Knight has reached the Igushik Section of the Nushagak commercial fishing district. That’s according to reports the Alaska Department of Fish and Game received yesterday at 4 p.m. that people in the area smelled fuel and saw a sheen on the water.

After the entire Nushagak District was closed in response to the fuel spill on Thursday, the Igushik Section only was reopened Friday. The Igushik Section closed again at 6 p.m. on Sunday.

“We’ll fly a survey [on Monday] and see what we can see,” area management biologist Tim Sands said. “But I can’t imagine opening the fishery for a couple days because it will take a while for whatever fuel is out there to dissipate. And if it’s got all the way over to Igushik, I believe it could basically be anywhere in the bay — more likely on the west side of the bay because of the wind. But with the tide sucking and swirling around, who knows where it could end up.”

Fish and Game is advising subsistence users that there is potential for fuel to float to Dillingham beaches and to “be aware of that possibility.”

It is unclear how much fuel has spilled. When the 58-foot tender sank on Wednesday it was carrying 1,100 gallons of diesel and hydraulic fuel.

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