SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – The U.S. Coast Guard says its crews are cutting apart sections of a grounded freighter just off an uninhabited island in a strait between Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic.
The Coast Guard statement says they hope to refloat the damaged ship and sink it after removing parts of the 202-foot-long freighter on Monday to increase buoyancy.
The Honduran-flagged ship ran aground June 21 on Mona Island, a remote Puerto Rican island that is a nature reserve. Thousands of gallons of oily water and tons of cargo have been safely removed.
Investigators have still not found the owners of the boat, which was carrying 79 Haitian migrants. All the migrants were detained. The crew had told authorities they were headed to the French Caribbean island of St. Martin.