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Eighth Lifting Lug Installed on Golden Ray

Unified Command photo by Chief Petty Officer Kip Wadlow
Unified Command photo by Chief Petty Officer Kip Wadlow

By The Maritime Executive 05-06-2020 07:16:09

T&T Salvage has installed the eighth lifting lug on the Golden Ray wreck in St. Simons Sound, Georgia. 

In total, 16 lugs are scheduled to be installed with two lugs installed on each of the eight sections of the car carrier. The lifting lugs will be used as a connection point between the rigging of the VB-10,000 twin-gantry catamaran, and each section of the Golden Ray. The lugs are designed to distribute the weight of each particular section during the cutting and lifting operation.

According to Fox News, the Unified Command had hoped to remove the wreck before the hurricane season officially starts on June 1, but the coronavirus pandemic has delayed progress despite teams working around the clock on the job. While none of the salvage team have been directly affected by COVID-19, the pandemic has delayed the arrival of materials and equipment needed.

Weeks Marine installed the 80th and final piling for the environmental protection barrier around the Golden Ray on April 18. In the initial phase of the response, salvors with Donjon-Smit stabilized the site by depositing a "rock blanket" on the bottom surrounding the ship. Salvors have also removed more than 320,000 gallons of oil and water mixture from the vessel. 

With U.S. Coast Guard approval, granted with input from the members of the St. Simons Sound unified command, shipowner Hyundai Glovis appointed T&T Salvage to demolish the vessel in place. The plan calls for cutting the ship into eight large sections, then hoisting and removing each section by barge. Some portion of the 4,200 new cars contained within the Golden Ray's hull are expected to fall into the water during the operation, according to court filings.

The 20,000 dwt car carrier partially capsized on September 8, 2019 while heading outbound from the Port of Brunswick, Georgia. Thanks to the efforts of first responders and U.S. Coast Guard helicopter aircrews, all crewmembers were rescued safely, including four individuals who were trapped in the vessel's engine room.