Two boats sunk in Oak Bay Harbour were raised and removed Thursday thanks to the joint efforts of a group of concerned citizens and organizations.
Organizer Chris Porter, of WildVision Edutainment, said the raising of the two boats went smoothly.
“The sailboat is floating and in Oak Bay to get cleaned and surveyed with the aim to turn it into a community outreach program for kids to learn about the oceans,” Porter said. “The power boat is on a farm for storage to be processed for a boat recycling initiative that I want to start to create a self-financing cooperative that will deal with the derelict vessel issue of B.C.”
The two vessels had been a concern since early February. With the 90-day period to contact the owner passed, no known information on the owner’s whereabouts or condition of dealing with the vessels had been gathered, Porter said.
The Receiver of Wrecks received the salvage request submitted by Porter, who first heard the story in the local media when a young student shared her concerns for the harbour’s marine life.
Porter, a diver, removed the hazardous materials and debris from the vessels to ensure there was minimal impact on the environment. In early June, Transport Canada’s Receiver of Wrecks confirmed authorization to the claim of salvage to raise the two vessels.
A variety of local business experts contributed their time and expertise to the project, including C-Tow Victoria, Murray’s Boat Hauling, Cold Water Divers, Frank White’s Diving, WildVision Edutainment and Hillside Shopping Centre.