Omega Protein Vessel Aids Stranded Tugboat at Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel

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The Omega Protein vessel Tidelands spotted a tugboat snared between two narrow sections of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel on Wednesday evening. Omega Protein Captain Tom Moore acted quickly with his crew to aid the stranded tugboat.

"He was in a bad way. Thank goodness we were there, because it could have been a lot worse than what it was."

Early evening on Wednesday, July 29, the Omega Protein fishing vessel Tidelands pulled double duty as a rescue ship when it came to the aid of a tugboat whose barges became entangled at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, located at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay.

The tugboat, which was heading toward New York and was towing two barges loaded with bridge trestles, had just cleared a narrow section of the bridge between two pylons. But a quick-moving tide pushed the barges off course and into the bridge pylons. Seeing that the tugboat and barges had become snared by the bridge, Captain Tom Moore, at the helm of the Tidelands, set out with crew members aboard the vessel's purse seine boats to unmoor the stranded ships.

"We had to go. We were right there watching it," said Captain Moore, a fifth generation menhaden fisherman who has worked with Omega Protein for the past 20 years, 8 of them as a captain. "If I was captain on the tugboat, I would have surely wanted someone in my situation to come help me."

The purse seine boats, which are normally used to catch schools of menhaden, were able to push the barges free of the pylons, rescuing the tugboat from a near-disaster, and allowing the boat to continue on its way. Because of the quick actions of the crew of the Tidelands, the incident was quickly resolved within 15 minutes. When the Coast Guard arrived to aid in the operation, the Tidelands had already cleared the tugboat and its barges of the bridge pylons. Though the bridge sustained some minimal damage, the rapid response from Captain Moore and his crew helped prevent further problems for the tugboat, its barges, and the bridge.

"He was in a bad way. Thank goodness we were there, because it could have been a lot worse than what it was," said Captain Moore.

Listen to Tidelands Captain Tom Moore describe the experience

Contact:
Captain Tom Moore
Omega Protein
(804) 724-0149

Ben Landry
Director of Public Affairs
Omega Protein
(713) 940-6183

About Omega Protein

Omega Protein Corporation (NYSE:OME) is a century old nutritional company that develops, produces and delivers healthy products throughout the world to improve the nutritional integrity of functional foods, dietary supplements and animal feeds. Omega Protein's mission is to help people lead healthier lives with better nutrition through sustainably sourced ingredients such as highly-refined omega-3 rich fish oil, specialty proteins and nutraceuticals.

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Ben Landry
Omega Protein
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