Grounded Spanish Minesweeper Refloated, Towed to Port

The Turia fitted with float bags for the refloat attempt (Spanish Navy)

Published Sep 4, 2019 9:11 PM by The Maritime Executive

[Brief] The Spanish minesweeper Turia has been successfully refloated and returned to the naval base at Cartagena, Spain. The vessel arrived at the base Tuesday night after salvors finished their preparations and pulled her off of a rocky shoal at La Manga, the narrow peninsula near Cartagena where the Turia grounded last week.

Spanish Navy

A las 16:00 horas se ha iniciado el remolque del cazaminas #Turia, hacia las instalaciones de @NavantiaOficial en #Cartagena.
La finalización de los trabajos a bordo y las buenas condiciones meteorológicas han permitido adelantar su reflotamiento en aguas limpias. pic.twitter.com/ybUCz05qPX

— Armada Española (@Armada_esp) September 3, 2019

Civilian salvage contractors placed float bags around and within the Turia to aid in her removal. Towing began at about 1600 hours and the vessel was back at her base the same evening. The process was originally scheduled for Monday but was set back a day due to poor weather conditions on scene.

The Turia grounded during a search for a downed Spanish Air Force C-101 training jet last Tuesday. She suffered hull damage and flooding in several compartments. The Spanish Navy responded by lightering off her fuel to prevent pollution and reduce her drat, and it brought in a salvage company to manage the refloat process. 

More than 60 percent of the downed plane's wreckage has since been recovered; the pilot, identified as Cmdr. Francisco Marín Núñez, did not survive.