M/V Lyubov Orlov

M/V Lyubov Orlova, via Lilpop,Rau&Loewenstein in the Antarctic, 17 February 2010

UPDATE Jan. 24, 2013: Cannibal Rat-Infested Ghost Ship Story Hijacks the Internet -FAQ

3 years ago the M/V Lyubov Orlova was an expedition cruise ship carrying high-paying passengers to remote polar regions.  This might have been her heydey as a passenger vessel, although little is known about her service while working for Far East Shipping behind the iron curtain of the former Soviet Union.

She’s now covered in rust, bobbing in the rough seas off Newfoundland waiting in limbo while authorities on shore, and her owner, figure out what to do with her.

The plan was, and likely still is, to tow her to  the Dominican Republic to be scrapped, however one day out of St. John’s, Newfoundland, her tow line snapped in bad weather, leaving the ship at the mercy of the seas, while drifting dangerously close to high-value oil and gas platforms in the region.

Transport Canada announced this morning that the offshore supply vessel, Atlantic Hawk, with a 157 tonne continuous bollard pull rating. has successfully gained control of the driftng ship and it is no longer a risk to oil and gas operations in the region.  To clarify however, the Atlantic Hawk is under contract by Husky Energy and was tasked to regain control of the drifting vessel.  The Charlene Hunt, a tug owned by American tug operator Hunt Marine, was initially contracted to tow the ship south to the Dominican Republic.

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