Salvage of the Rich Passage

76’ passenger ferry, Rich Passage 1, is salvaged, refloated and towed to Port Townsend. Salvage Master, Captain Jack and The Undersea Company provided a salvage plan utilizing several components of local vessels. The 78 foot tug, Red Bluff, owned by Star Marine, actually did the honors of pulling the high and dry ferry back into the bay at the high tide of January 29. The other vessels then carried on with handling the tow to Port Townsend. They included the Ed Nelson of Western Workboats and the two Marine Assist of Port Hadlock vessels, Gabriel and Ultimate.
The ferry, owned by Kitsap Transit, was originally headed to Port Townsend to be hauled out when it missed the south entrance to Port Hadlock Canal and went on the West side. Fortunately that side is a gravel bar as opposed to the other side of the canal being jagged basalt rock. It had run up just at high tide in the darkness at 0530 January 28. It was so high-and-dry that it was in the driftwood level.

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