American-Registered Vessel Grounded in Belizean Waters

Wednesday, September 7th, 2016

The Belize Coast Guard has confirmed that a civilian vessel, registered in Delaware, USA, was grounded on the Belize Barrier Reef in the area of Hatchet Caye, located east-northeast of Placencia on Saturday, September 3rd. Onboard the vessel were three Colombians, four Guatemalans, and one American citizen. The incident reportedly took place around 5 PM and was relayed to the Coast Guard by the Belize Fisheries Department.

The Government of Belize (GOB) through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed with Guatemalan Authorities that the vessel left the Port of Livingston, Guatemala bound for Big Creek, Belize sometime after 10:30 AM on Friday, September 2nd.

The Belize Coast Guard has secured the area and deployed a crew comprising of the Department of Environment, Immigration Department and the Belize Port Authority on Monday, September 5th to further examine the scene and determine what further actions will be taken.

Lieutenant Charles Francisco

Lieutenant Charles Francisco

According to Lieutenant Charles Francisco, Operations Manager of the Belize Coast Guard, they were informed about the situation, and ensures the public that they are investigating the matter. “There is a task force that is currently conducting assessments as it relates to damage to the reef and damage to the vessel and whatnot. However, we are still awaiting reports of that assessment, and they were in no distress per se. The vessel is high above water so they were taken off the vessel and taken care of by fisheries officers and coast guard members stationed at Middle Water Caye,” said Francisco.
More information will become available once the assessment and examination is completed.

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