After being stripped of equipment and her fuel tanks emptied, the R/V Wecoma, sitting well above her water line, today was towed out of Yaquina Bay and across the bar into the open sea. The tug doing the pulling will tow the Wecoma south to Ensenada, Mexico, where it will be scrapped, according to Hatfield Marine Science Center.
The Wecoma first crossed the bar as a new ship in 1976 and led many a mission all over the eastern Pacific, including the Hawaiian Islands and the Bering Sea off Alaska. The recent discovery of a hull crack, that was not cost-effective to repair, doomed the vessel and has since been replaced by the R/V Oceanus, which recently arrived from it’s mothball berth at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution near Boston. It already carries much of the scientific equipment that was aboard the Wecoma.
We have video of the Wecoma leaving port which we are now processing. It should be up later tonight.