The record season, however, comes with some notable asterisks, including very small fish.
The aging operations hub will have a higher profile role in the coming years, as the U.S. boosts its presence in an Arctic region rapidly changing as the climate warms.
What role an ice buildup may have played in the sinking is unclear, and the Coast Guard is investigating other possible factors such as the potential for leaks that could have caused flooding.
The Coast Guard inquiry will result in a report that is expected to point to a probable cause of the sinking, as well as come up with recommendations on how to improve safety in the Alaska fleet that joins in winter harvests for snow and king crab.
The policy shift was made Wednesday in the aftermath of outbreaks that flared in plants and offshore processing ships.
Trident Seafoods reports that four workers at the company’s Akutan seafood plant in the Aleutian Islands have tested positive for coronavirus, including one who had difficulty breathing and had to be evacuated by air to a hospital in Anchorage.
Winter harvests typically offer prime fishing as the pollock come together in the southern Bering Sea off Alaska before spawning.
The Polar Star’s usual mission in the Antarctic was scuttled as the coronavirus pandemic prompted research to be cut back and restrictions put in place.
The owners of the Scandies Rose have reached a settlement with two surviving crew and the families of four of five men who died when the Washington-managed boat went down on New Year’s Eve.
Portland police are investigating Aaron J. Danielson’s death while Oregon State Police are assigned to the city to bolster law enforcement. Police have not officially identified a suspect.
The decline encompasses salmon runs all over the state but varies by species and region.
American Seafoods has been buffeted in the past two weeks by test results from crews of three other vessels unloading frozen fish in Bellingham, Washington.
The FV American Dynasty was scheduled to fish later in summer for pollock in the Bering Sea off Alaska.
These are extraordinary times for Alaska’s seafood industry, which each year delivers more than half of the U.S. harvest from coastal and offshore waters.
The disruptions represent a huge but largely hidden toll of the pandemic, which has slashed services available to patients and inflicted a major economic blow on hospitals and health care workers.