The 69-foot steel tug boat Big Al was sent to the bottom of the sea early Wednesday 2/24 afternoon as an estimated 100 spectators aboard 20 boats watched, photographed and took video of what is Martin County's newest offshore artificial reef structure.
The tug sank quickly after it was properly positioned in line with other artificial reefs created by the county and the foundation through private contributions. The crew working aboard the Regina T tug and Molly work boat owned by McCulley Marine Services, and Treasure Coast reef consultant Kerry Dillon battled current, wind and the edge of the severe midday squall that impacted Martin County on the mainland. The TUG reached bottom in 187 feet of water near the Wickstrom, a 168 foot long steel freighter deployed in January 2003. It is part of Martin County's Sirotkin permitted reef area located in deep water.