Freighter used its own power to back outA 600-foot freighter was freed after it ran around this morning in the Columbia River.

The Apollon, homeported in Limassol, Cyprus, was fully loaded with grain when it lost power and took a left turn into Clatsop Spit at about 5:30 a.m., Coast Guard spokesman Chief Paul Painter said.

The tide was about halfway out when the ship ran aground. The stern of the ship still had some movement, but the bow was stuck fast in 36 feet of water at about 9 a.m. The Apollon displaces about 40 feet.

At about 10 a.m., the ship used its own power to back out of the area where it's bow was stuck.

Two tug boats were en-route, but not needed.

The ship was not taking on water or leaking any diesel fuel, Painter reported. The Coast Guard crews monitored the situation.

"Any time one of these boats runs around its a big deal," Painter said. "Ever since the New Carissa, everyone of these is real important."

In 1999, the freighter New Carissa ran aground while waiting to enter Coos Bay. The ship ended up splitting in two. Part of it was towed away and was sunk. Another part is still beached on shore.


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