The Maran Gas Coronis, the LNG tanker carrying liquefied natural gas from Yemen to New England came into Boston Harbor skirting East Boston, Charlestown and Chelsea on the low tide without incident early Tuesday morning before docking at the Distrigas Terminal in Everett.
Despite protests from Mayor Carlo DeMaria, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino and Chelsea city manager Jay Ash and other local public officials and law enforcement officers, the Coast Guard allowed the ship to enter the harbor.
“One incident – that’s all it will take to change our world,” Mayor Menino told the Independent.
“I agree completely with Mayor Menino,” said city manager Ash.
Dozens of smaller Coast Guard vessels with armed seamen and Boston Police boat forces surrounded the giant ocean going LNG tanker as it made its way into the harbor.
Other patrol craft cruised the harbor perimeter while local police in all the communities involved – Chelsea, Charlestown and Everett, also employed extra caution as the ship came into its berth in Everett.
The Coast Guard decision two weeks ago to allow the ship entrance into the harbor was made because Coast Guard officials said the entry was not a danger and that everything relevant about the ship and its crew had been checked out.
Local officials, led by Mayor Menino, said they would prefer, as a measure of added safety, that the LNG be off-loaded offshore and outside of the harbor.
Distrigas officials insisted the delivery of the LNG to the Distrigas terminal in Everett is safe.
In more than 30 years of operation, LNG deliveries have been made there without incident.
However, in recent years, public officials have come to be nervous with the terrorist threat always hovering about.
“We won’t get a second chance if something happens inside the harbor,” said Mayor Menino.