MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – The shrimp boat that washed ashore in Myrtle Beach during Hurricane Ian has officially been removed.
It took crews about two hours to get the boat, named Shayna Michelle, loose and back out into the waters.
The original plan was to remove the boat on Monday during high tide, but that didn’t happen because the tide kept two smaller tug boats from making it to Myrtle Beach in time, according to MCpl. Tom Vest with the Myrtle Beach Police Department.
On Tuesday, two other shrimp boats were brought in to help pull Shayna Michelle out to sea and back to its home in Holden Beach.
Vest explained that crews dug a trench out to the ocean and then there was a line wrapped around Shayna Michelle and then hooked to the two other boats so that they could pull Shayna Michelle out into the waters.
Over 100 people came out to the beach to say their final farewells to the shrimp boat that has been a topic of conversation for a couple of days.
Velvet Loves, who is visiting Myrtle Beach, said she has had a bird’s eye view of the boat since it washed ashore.
“I flew in Friday morning, I saw the ship and then I came back to book a hotel room with a balcony to watch this evolution of the ship being saved,” Loves said.
The captain of the boat, Kevin Benz, explained that the crew was trying to make it on Thursday to Murrells Inlet before the storm arrived but had engine issues. The Coast Guard came in to rescue four people on board the ship. The crew anchored it but Hurricane Ian’s powerful winds and storm surge brought the boat onto shore.
Myrtle Beach police and officers with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources have been monitoring the boat 24/7 in order to keep people away from it. Barriers were also been put up to deter onlookers from getting too close.
“There was a lot of man hours that went into the recovery on all sides. I mean you got equipment operators, equipment captains, there was a lot of people involved in this, you know we’re one small part of it, and we’re happy to keep security,” Vest said.
One man was arrested after trying to get on the shrimp boat after it ended up in Myrtle Beach. Vest said since then no one has tried to climb on the boat.