SAN JUAN COUNTY, WA. June 23, 2023 – San Juan County’s Derelict Vessel Program strives to minimize the impacts of derelict vessels throughout the county. By working closely with the public, local authorities, and the Washington State Department of Natural Resources, the program seeks to address and mitigate the problems caused by abandoned, forgotten, or neglected boats. The County asks that residents and visitors work together to minimize the harm derelict vessels can cause to our communities and to our marine environment.
In an emergency:
If you see a vessel that is sinking, adrift, or releasing pollutants into the water, Call 9-1-1.
The Derelict Vessel Program has successfully mitigated multiple threats posed by derelict and abandoned boats, thanks in part to the responsive support of local contractors including Towline Marine Assist, LLC -TowBoatU.S. Over the past four years, San Juan County has led the response to and removal of 25 vessels. These efforts are costly and partially funded by the Department of Natural Resources through the State’s boat registration fees.
No. of Vessels Removed
Friday Harbor (5)
Friday Harbor (3)
2023 thru May
In a joint effort between the County’s Sheriff’s Office and the Derelict Vessel Program, 14 marine patrols have been conducted since March 2021. Five boats identified in patrols as neglected or abandoned have since been removed from the water and the County is currently monitoring 30 vessels of concern.
The County asks the public to help identify potential derelict vessels before they require a costly response and removal.
In a non-emergency:
Additional resources are available:
- View the Derelict Vessels in San Juan County VIDEO to find out the harm these derelict vessels can cause to our community and our marine environment, and what you can do to help prevent this. (youtube.com/watch?v=QYvUmuWpZBc)
- Do you own or know someone that owns a potentially derelict boat? To participate in the WA Department of Natural Resources Vessel Turn-in Program please refer to the Application at: dnr.wa.gov/programs-and-services/aquatics/derelict-vessels/vessel-turn-program.
About San Juan County’s Department of Environmental Stewardship
San Juan County’s Department of Environmental Stewardship is responsible for solid waste, marine resources, clean water, cultural resources, and climate and sustainability work. The department offices are located at 1609 Beaverton Valley Road, Friday Harbor, WA 98250. For more information about San Juan County’s Department of Environmental Stewardship, visit www.sanjuanco.com/839/Environmental-Stewardship.