New Tampa clues hint tanker strayed

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New clues found on the floor of Tampa Bay may prove to support the Coast Guard's contention that the Jan. 28 collision between its buoy tender Blackthorn and the oil tanker of SS Capricorn was the tanker's fault.

Navy divers said they found a Navy- issue flashflight and a piece of steel plating in the main shipping channel to Tampa's port near the point Blackthorn's officers said their ship was at the time of the crash.

The Capricorn's captain and pilot have testified repeatedly that their ship was on the opposite side of the channel when the ships hit.

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Divers have been looking for physical evidence to try to prove where the accident happened, and the debris will be raised and analyzed to determine if it came from the Blackthorn, Monitor contributor Gil Klein reports.

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