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DATE: January 2, 2013 9:12:00 AM AKST

For more information contact:
Unified Command Joint Information Center at (907) 433-3417
Update #17: Flyovers planned to assess Kulluk condition


The Unified Command plans multiple flyovers today to assess the condition of the Conical Drill Unit (CDU) Kulluk that remains grounded but stable near Sitkalidak Island located on the north edge of Ocean Bay.

Once conditions are deemed safe, Unified Command intends to place an assessment team on the Kulluk to further evaluate the vessel’s condition.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) instituted a Temporary Flight Restriction, and the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Alex Haley is maintaining a safety zone of one nautical mile around the Kulluk this morning. Both restrictions were put in place to ensure the safety of response personnel, as well as local mariners and aviation pilots in the area.

The Kulluk is upright and stable, and the Coast Guard flight crew’s aerial assessment Jan. 1, 2013 found no signs of environmental impact.

More than 600 people are supporting this response. Unified Command remains focused on ensuring the safety of responders and protecting the environment.

Unified Command is working with Old Harbor Native Corporation to stage spill response equipment should it be needed.

Media inquiries should be directed to the Joint Information Center 907-433-3417. Visit www.KullukResponse.com for more information including photos and video.

U.S. Coast Guard overflight of Kulluk aground    U.S. Coast Guard overflight of Kulluk aground    U.S. Coast Guard overflight of Kulluk aground
Rear Adm. Thomas Ostebo, commander, 17th Coast Guard District and 17th District Incident Management Team commander, observes the conical drilling unit Kulluk from an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter during a second overflight Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013. The Kulluk grounded on the southeast shore of Sitkalidak Island Monday night. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer First Class Sara Francis.    Members of a DonJon-SMIT salvage team prepare their gear at Air Station Kodiak, Alaska, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013. The salvage team conducted an aerial survey of the conical drilling unit Kulluk 40 miles southwest of Kodiak City, Alaska, from a Coast Guard helicopter. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Sara Francis.    The conical drilling unit Kulluk sits aground on the southeast shore of Sitkalidak Island about 40 miles southwest of Kodiak City, Alaska, in 40 mph winds and 20-foot seas Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer First Class Sara Francis.

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