BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — More than 4,000 gallons of oily, watery waste has been removed as crews continue efforts to save USS The Sullivans.

Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, Erie County Naval & Military Park President Paul Marzello, Commander of the Buffalo Sector of the U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Lexia Littlejohn and DEC Acting Regional Director Chad Staniszewski provided an update on Tuesday afternoon.

The waste coming from the ship is the biggest concern for crews right now. In terms of the status of the ship itself, Marzello says there’s been no change in position. As of 1 p.m., it remained wedged against the shoreline.

“The ship is fairly stable right now,” Capt. Littlejohn said during the conference.

Since weather conditions have improved, divers went into the water on Wednesday morning to explore the ship.

Last week, USS The Sullivans began to partially sink as it sat at the Naval Park. Before this started happening, support to save the World War II-era vessel had come from countless sources, including at least 25 states and seven different countries.

“She is a gift to Buffalo, New York,” Marzello said during a conference this past weekend. “And she represents the courage and the honor and the commitment, of not only the five Sullivan boys who that ship is named after, but the thousands of veterans that have served this country.”

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer came to town on Monday to share a three-part plan.

  1. Work on securing federal funding.
  2. Call on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to work with local officials on remaining cleanup issues.
  3. Push for major increases to the National Maritime Heritage Grant Program in this year’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

“We cannot let the Sullivans’ stories sink into the abyss,” Schumer said.

The historic vessel has been a draw for visitors at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park. Since it started going underwater, crews have been working around the clock to keep it afloat.

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Updates on USS The Sullivans

Evan Anstey is an Associated Press Award and Emmy-nominated digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.