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Tsunami-tossed boat spotted off western Canada

A Japanese fishing boat lost in the Pacific Ocean after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami was sighted March 20, 2012 drifting 150 nautical miles off the southern coast of Haida Gwaii near British Columbia, Canada by the crew of an aircraft on a routine surveillance patrol. The vessel is considered an obstruction to navigation, and a Notice to Shipping has been issued by the Canadian Coast Guard. A Japanese fishing boat lost in the Pacific Ocean after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami was sighted March 20, 2012 drifting 150 nautical miles off the southern coast of Haida Gwaii near British Columbia, Canada by the crew of an aircraft on a routine surveillance patrol. The vessel is considered an obstruction to navigation, and a Notice to Shipping has been issued by the Canadian Coast Guard. (AP Photo/Canadian Department of National Defence via The Canadian Press)
March 24, 2012
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VANCOUVER, British Columbia—A large fishing vessel swept away by the tsunami that devastated Japan last year has been spotted adrift off British Columbia in western Canada.

Jeff Olsson of Victoria's Joint rescue coordination center says an airplane contracted by the government spotted the 50-foot-long (15-meter-long) vessel recently about 160 miles (260 kilometers) west of Haida Gwaii, slowly drifting toward shore.

The vessel has been identified as coming from Hokkaido, Japan. Olsson says no one is believed to be aboard and there's no environmental danger.

A maritime warning has been issued because the vessel could pose a navigational hazard.

About 5 million tons of debris were swept into the ocean in March 2011 when a magnitude-9.0 earthquake and tsunami struck Japan.

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