Bayport Channel Collision Info
- December 10, 2019
Galveston Bay Foundation’s Role in Bayport Channel Collision: Galveston Bay Foundation is a nonprofit conservation organization with a mission to preserve and protect Galveston Bay. During incidents like the Bayport Channel Collision, Galveston Bay Foundation works with partner organizations to evaluate the potential impacts the spill could have on the Bay. In this case, we have been invited to serve on a committee of the Unified Command response called “Resources at Risk.” Philip Smith, our Director of Conservation, is serving on this committee, which evaluates impacts to natural resources across Galveston Bay. In addition, our Kemah property is in close proximity to the gasoline product and we took water samples at the property on Saturday, May 11. With ITC response, we conducted our own independent monitoring efforts to fulfil a testing and sampling effort that we felt was not being met. In this case, we are confident that Unified Command has mobilized, is actively responding to the incident, and is fulfilling environmental impact and assessment needs. We will update the public with our data from the water samples collected on May 11 when it becomes available and will share other applicable data as we receive it from incident responders.
On Sunday, May 12, incident responders found a fish kill on our Kemah property. Texas Parks and Wildlife Department attributes this fish kill to the spilled gasoline product. Galveston Bay Foundation is currently working with incident response on the cleanup at our Kemah property. Moving forward, we advocate to make sure the responsible party figures out why this happened and that they learn from it so incidents like this do not happen again.
Is it safe to swim in the Bay? Please visit the incident response website. Please call the joint information line at 281-755-4670 or the Galveston County Health District at (409) 938-7221 for any human health and safety concerns in relation to this incident.
Is it safe to eat seafood from the Bay? Texas Department of State Health Services has lifted the seafood advisory that was in place after the spill. More details on the Texas Department of State Health Services website.
Is it safe to eat seafood from a restaurant? Restaurants have standards they have to follow as does the seafood industry. If you are concerned you may be served contaminated seafood, you can ask what the source of the seafood is from the restaurant.
How can I help? When invited or approved by the commanding entities within the incident response network, the Galveston Bay Foundation can assist with the coordination of spill response volunteers and enlist volunteers to help in low-to-no impact areas. At this time, incident command is not calling for the activation of volunteers, and we will not be deploying volunteers to our Kemah property while cleanup efforts are underway. While incident response is not currently accepting volunteers for this spill, you can always volunteer for the Bay in other capacities with Galveston Bay Foundation. You can also join us to further our mission to preserve and protect Galveston Bay by becoming a Galveston Bay Foundation member.
For all concerns about the spill, we encourage you to reach out to incident response.