Renda, Healy Prepare to Leave Nome

The Coast Guard Cutter Healy and Russian tanker Renda will begin ice breaking operations Friday morning in preparation for their outbound journey from Nome.

Greg Tlapa, the executive officer of the Healy says the Renda has been taking on water and provisions Thursday. Friday at 9am, he says the Healy will begin warming its engines and coordinating with a helicopter reconnaissance to chart a south-by-southeast path away from Nome. But they’ll first have to dislodge the Renda from the ice.

If that doesn’t work, Tlapa says there are other methods to free the Renda.

Tlapa says it’s difficult to know exactly how frozen in place the Renda is. But he’s confident the Healy will be able to provide the relief needed to free the tanker and begin carving a path south to the ice edge, nearly 400 miles away.

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Matthew Smith is a reporter at KNOM in Nome.

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