LAKE ERIE — Crews continue to respond and investigate a sunken barge in Lake Erie and the U.S. Coast Guard continues to hold a 1,000 foot wide safety zone it established last month.

In early October the Coast Guard began an investigation with multiple agencies and a salvage company.

The Cost Guard says during dive operations Wednesday, a pin–hole sized leak was found in one of the cargo tanks of the vessel. The team successfully secured the leak, and a sample of the substance found was collected for inspection.

Reportedly results from the sample indicate that it was typical of a light to medium refined oil that had significantly degraded over time.

The salvage company completed their assessment with a total of 12 hatches discovered. The Coast Guard says that samples were taken from the sediment inside the open compartments and have been sent for testing.

The safety zone will remain closed to all traffic until further notice while the investigation and salvage continue.