Local news media reported that the sabotage was discovered before the ship could sink. An alarm alerted the ship's owner, Leif Einar Karlsen, who lives nearby. He attempted to slow the water that was coming in through the open valves, but by the time the fire department arrived, the engine room was under several feet of water. Karlsen has pledged to repair the Sofie and begin killing minke whales in May.
It has been one year since the last attempted sinking of a whaling ship in Norway. In April 2009, an attempt was made to sink the whaling ship "Skarbakk" when it was moored at Henningsvaer, Norway. In August 2007, the whaling ship "Willassen Senior" was sunk in the harbor in Svolvaer (the boat was only a stone's throw away from where the Sofie was docked).
The Sofie is the seventh Norwegian whaling vessel to come under attack for illegal whaling activities since 1992. After the attack on the Sofie, the head of a Norwegian whaling organization complained to the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation, "It is outrageous that this can be done year after year without anyone being caught."