With the threat to Alaska's marine life looming, United States Coast Guard brought an end to the eerie story of Japan's drifting ghost ship by unleashing cannon fire and sinking the vessel in what experts deemed the most environmentally-safe location on Thursday. The Ryou-Un Maru, which news outlets have dubbed the 'Ghost Ship', was dislodged and set adrift off the shores of Hokkaido during last year's tsunami and according to CNN (video below), "drifted undetected until late last month when a Canadian coastal air patrol spotted it several hundred miles off the Queen Charlotte Islands, an archipelago on the north coast of British Columbia."
Apparently, the ship floated along at one-mile-per-hour across the Pacific until Thursday. Experts deemed that its grounding and sinking would threaten Alaska's marine life. According to The Washington Post, "The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency studied the problem and decided it is safer to sink the ship and let the fuel evaporate in the open water." And according to the Coast Guard spokesman David Mosely, the ghost ship's final resting place is around 180 miles southwest of Alaska's port city of Sitka (Google map left). "I think it captured a lot of people because it survived," Mosley told CNN. "It was swept away by the tsunami. It's believed lost. It's forgotten about. And it spends an entire year at sea, a summer, a winter and it makes it all the way across the Pacific Ocean."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.