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Coast Guard helps Vista Star back to port

Updated: June 30, 2020 05:39 PM

The U.S. Coast Guard helped the Vista Star back into port Tuesday after it became disabled outside of the Duluth entry. The Vista Fleet leadership said there was a small mechanical failure while under the lift bridge.

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Dozens of passengers aboard the tourist boat, wearing life jackets, watched as other vessels nudged the ship and people on shore helped pull the Vista Star into place behind the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center. About 32 passengers disembarked from the vessel shortly before 12:30 p.m.

Petty Officer Trevor Matelski, from Coast Guard Station Duluth, said they received a report that the boat was disabled out of the Duluth entry.

"We went over there to make sure everyone was safe. We were going to leave it to commercial towing to take care of it. They were doing a stern tow taking them through the Duluth entry, when they started drifting towards the wall. So we stepped in, and did a side tow, and assisted them safely under the lift bridge with the help of another vessel. All three of us moored them up safely," Matelski said.

Vista's assistant general manager, Colleen Smith, said in a statement, "We had to drop anchor and call the Coast Guard for assistance to be towed back into our dock.  Our crew is trained for emergency situations like this on a monthly basis and did great handling the situation.  Everyone on board left smiling, and we are hoping to be back up and running for the holiday weekend." 

The Vista Star is part of the Vista Fleet, which offers tours of the Twin Ports area.

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