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Adventuress hits rock in Wasp Passage

The Adventuress, 133-foot schooner, ran aground today in Wasp Passage. Twenty-seven people were aboard; there were no reports of injuries. - Journal of the San Juan Islands file photo
The Adventuress, 133-foot schooner, ran aground today in Wasp Passage. Twenty-seven people were aboard; there were no reports of injuries.
— image credit: Journal of the San Juan Islands file photo

27 evacuated; no injuries reported

The 133-foot schooner Adventuress ran aground in Wasp Passage Monday, forcing the evacuation of 27 passengers and crewmembers.

No injuries were reported.

Around noon, the historic 95-year-old schooner struck a rock in the passage. The U.S. Coast Guard, Vessel Assist and the state ferries Sealth and Evergreen State went to the scene.

Vessel Assist and the ferries removed all 27 passengers and crew safely from the vessel.

Coast Guard Air Station Port Angeles launched an MH-65C Dolphin helicopter crew to the scene as well as a rescue boat crew from Coast Guard Station Bellingham.

The Adventuress is owned by Sound Experience, a Puget Sound-based environmental and youth leadership organization that runs programs aboard the wooden schooner.

The Coast Guard will conduct an investigation into the cause of the grounding, which is unknown at this time. No pollution has been reported.

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer quoted a Coast Guard spokeswoman as saying the schooner sustained no apparent hull damage but ran aground fairly hard.

The Adventuress was built in 1913 as a luxury schooner for John Borden II of Chicago, founder of the Yellow Cab Company. “On her first trip, she sailed all the way down to and through the Straits of Magellan and then up to arctic waters so Borden and his companions could hunt — unsuccessfully — for bowhead whales,” according to Sound Experience’s Web site.

For 35 years, she was a pilot boat off California’s Farallon Islands. She served the Coast Guard, guarding San Francisco Bay, during World War II. She was beached for 10 years near Sausalito and was vandalized. About 1960, she was brought to Lake Union and began use as a sail-training vessel.

Ferries returned to service

about 1 p.m.

The Sealth and the Evergreen State returned to service just after 1 p.m.

The Sealth was in the process of loading vehicles and passengers at the Orcas Island terminal for the 12:05 p.m. departure when the Coast Guard asked the ferry’s crew to come to the assistance of the grounded vessel.

The Evergreen State was asked to assist as it was heading for a stop at Orcas Island with a full load of vehicles and passengers. Both ferries launched rescue boats. Five passengers evacuated from the Adventuress were taken onto the Sealth.

“The prompt response from our captains and crews aboard the Sealth and the Evergreen State ferries today averted what could have been a dangerous situation,” Transportation Secretary Paula Hammond said in a press release.

Each year, ferry crews participate in more than 10,000 drills as a part of a rigorous training regimen. Ferry crews swiftly respond to numerous rescues throughout Puget Sound.

“Our crew’s regular training really paid off today,” said David Moseley, assistant secretary.

— With writing by Colleen Smith Armstrong

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