Hoegh Osaka Salvage Makes Progress – UPDATE

Hoegh Osaka pictured Tuesday, January 20, 2015. Photo courtesy MCA
Hoegh Osaka pictured Tuesday, January 20, 2015. Photo courtesy MCA

Tuesday Update: The list of the vessel has decreased to 37 degrees as of Monday night as salvors continue to pump more clean water from the lower car decks. The list was originally 52 degrees and is expected to decrease to 15 degrees over the coming days prior to the ship being moved from the Alpha Anchorage to Southampton, the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency reports.

The MCA reports that weather continues to remain favorable, however the long-range forecast is indicating that it is unlikely that the ship will be moved on Wednesday.

Photo courtesy UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency
Hoegh Osaka pictured Monday, January 19, 2015. Photo courtesy UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA)

Monday: If all goes according to plan the Hoegh Osaka car carrier could be moved to the port of Southampton as early as Wednesday, nearly three weeks after the ship was intentionally beached on the Bramble Bank in the Solent.

Over the weekend, the ship remained stable at the Alpha Anchorage as a much needed break in the weather allowed salvors to pump water from the vessel and continue ballasting operations, reducing the list to 47 degrees. Divers meanwhile were in the water carrying out inspections of the ship’s hull, determining that there is no significant damage.

On Sunday, the Secretary of State’s Representative for Intervention and Salvage (SOSREP) was at the site to witness the ongoing salvage operations, which are said to be “progressing well” according to the UK Maritime and Coast Guard Agency (MCA).

Pumpin operations. Photo courtesy MCA
Pumping operations. Photo courtesy MCA

According to Monday’s update from the MCA, de-watering operations finished at 11:30 Monday and preparations were underway to begin pumping water remaining in the car decks into the empty fuel tanks of the ship. As was reported previously, an estimated 3,000 tons of water entered the vessel through a crack in hull and an oily film, reported to be hydraulic fluid from the cars, had developed on the surface. The plan was to pump the clean water from the bottom in order to avoid the contaminated water. The update on Monday added that the list was expected to improve slowly “over the coming hours”.

Weather conditions are expected to remain favorable over the coming days, and salvors plan to move the Hoegh Osaka to the port of Southampton later this week, possibly as soon as late Wednesday or early Thursday.

Photo courtesy MCA
Photo courtesy MCA

The Hoegh Osaka, carrying some 1,400 cars, was intentionally grounded on the Bramble Bank in the Solent on Saturday, January 3 after the ship developed a severe list shortly after departure from Southampton. The ship self-refloated in high water and strong winds on January 7 and has since been held in position by tugs at the nearby Alpha Anchorage. Strong winds have played a critical role throughout the entire salvage project, however the ship has remained stable and no pollution has been reported.

The ongoing salvage is being managed by Svitzer.

FULL COVERAGE: Hoegh Osaka Grounding