Wainwright Marine Services Ltd. tugboats. A company tugboat went missing in the Garner Canal area south and east of Kitimat. (Wainwright Marine Services Ltd./Facebook)

Wainwright Marine Services Ltd. tugboats. A company tugboat went missing in the Garner Canal area south and east of Kitimat. (Wainwright Marine Services Ltd./Facebook)

UPDATE: Two confirmed dead in B.C. tugboat capsizing

Third person rescued from shore and brought to hospital

Two men are dead and another was rescued from a capsized tugboat off B.C.’s northwest coast in the early morning hours of Feb. 11.

BC Coroners service confirmed they are investigating two deaths related to the incident near Kitimat.

A tugboat owned by Wainwright Marine Services in Prince Rupert was towing a barge in the Gardner Canal 35 nautical miles south of Kitimat where it capsized and the emergency beacon activated. Conditions at the time were reported as very windy.

An RCMP release states at 12:40 a.m. the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre (JRCC) tasked an RCMP West Coast Marine vessel to attend the scene, where officers found the first deceased man.

The Canadian Coast Guard also assisted in the search and rescue operation, and found the second dead man.

The JRCC dispatched a Buffalo aircraft and a Cormorant helicopter from Canadian Forces Base Comox, but bad weather hampered their search efforts.

However, a private helicopter spotted a survivor on the shore who was soon transported to the local hospital.

READ MORE: Coast Guard rescue stranded boaters from island

Work Safe BC and the Transportation Safety Board have been advised of the incident. BC Coroners Service will be conducting a parallel investigation into the deaths.

The barge was carrying cargo in connection with the Rio Tinto project to drill a second tunnel at its Kemano hydro-electric generating facility. Water from the Nechako Reservoir flows through a first tunnel down to hydro-electric generators at Kemano to produce electricity which is then transmitted through power lines to Rio Tinto’s aluminum smelter at Kitimat.

The second tunnel is meant to provide a backup to ensure electricity can be generated using water from the Nechako Reservoir.

READ MORE: Two B.C. Indigenous Coast Guard auxiliary units receive big financial boost

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Students from SD62 stepped up to help members in the community with the annual 10,000 Tonight food drive. This year’s organizers had to adapt during the campaign as COIVD-19 public health orders changed. (Black Press Media file photo)
West Shore students step up to make sure community members don’t go without

Students of SD62 are this year’s recipient of the Youth Volunteer Award

Millstream Village is welcoming a new Marshalls location March 9. (Photo courtesy GWL Realty Advisors)
New Marshalls store in Langford brings boost to women in need

Retailer will hold opening ceremony in Millstream Village March 9

A cat died in this house fire in Sidney afternoon. The fire started on the house’s deck and spread from that point. Sidney Volunteer Fire Department Chief Brett Mikkelsen said the permanent presence of crews at the Community Safety Building prevented worse damage. (Photo courtesy of Clayton Firth)
Sidney house fire kills cat, causes extensive damage

Official says fire started on deck and damage to the house could have been worse

Each recipient of a 2021 Local Hero Award will receive a hand-carved paddle created by Haida artist John Bellis.
Meet the man behind the awards

Haida artist John Bellis hand-carved this year’s Local Hero awards

Abstract Developments is donating $75,000 to support community programming at The Cridge Centre for the Family. (Courtesy of The Cridge Centre)
Victoria developer builds support for community programs

Abstract Developments donates $75,000 to The Cridge Centre for the Family

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. The federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, start with the vaccination of police officers in internal police vaccination centers. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
B.C. officials to unveil new details of COVID vaccination plan Monday

Seniors and health-care workers who haven’t gotten their shot are next on the list

A boat caught fire in Ladysmith Harbour on Saturday morning. (Photo submitted)
Search underway for missing woman after boat catches fire in Ladysmith harbour

A large boat caught fire on the morning of Saturday, Feb. 27

Lone orca from a pod that made its way north from Georgia Strait and into Discovery Passage on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. Photo by Ella Smiley/<a href="https://www.facebook.com/Comoxvalleywildlifesightings/?ref=page_internal" target="_blank">Comox Valley Wildlife Sightings </a>
Island wildlife viewers thrilled by close view of passing Orca pod

Group gives wildlife photographers a classic opportunity to view them off Campbell River shoreline

An investigation is underway after a man was shot and killed by Tofino RCMP in Opitsaht. (Black Press Media file photo)
Man shot and killed by RCMP near Tofino, police watchdog investigating

Investigation underway by Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia.

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver on Tuesday December 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s compromise on in-person worship at three churches called ‘absolutely unacceptable’

Would allow outdoor services of 25 or less by Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack churches

Baldy Mountain Resort was shut down on Saturday after a fatal workplace accident. (Baldy Mountain picture)
Jasmine and Gwen Donaldson are part of the CAT team working to reduce stigma for marginalized groups in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Jasmine’s story: Stigma can be the hardest hurdle for those overcoming addiction

Recovering B.C. addict says welcome, connection and community key for rebuilding after drug habit

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Most Read