180-ft freighter Voici Bernadette now sleeping with fishes

Boaters watch as the 180-foot freighter Voici Bernadette sinks under the ocean's waves, becoming St. Lucie County's newest artificial reef. [Photo: Kaila Jones]

Surrounded by well over 200 boats, the 180-foot freighter Voici Bernadette slipped under the waves, coming to rest 100 feet below to become St. Lucie County’s newest artificial reef. The Voici Bernadette, which had sailed under a few nation’s flags, was ultimately seized by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection after it was found running drugs.

The government arranged to transfer it to St. Lucie County last June so it could be stripped and cleaned – then sunk. She will serve as a new dive site for recreational divers. The top of the ship sits at a 60-foot depth. The freighter is expected to quickly become new habitat for a variety of fish and marine life.

Video provided by Nicole Hall and Josh Dugan

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