Hoegh Osaka Self-Floated at High Tide

The Hoegh Osaka car carrier being assisted by tugs away the Bramble Bank after the ship self-floated, January 6, 2015. Photo courtesy Casey Sheargold
The Hoegh Osaka car carrier being assisted by tugs away the Bramble Bank after the ship self-floated, January 6, 2015. Photo courtesy Casey Sheargold

Thursday Update: Hoegh Osaka Stable at Anchorage, Salvage Work Continues

Previous: The grounded Hoegh Osaka car carrier self-floated from the sands of the Bramble Ban on Wednesday afternoon and is being towed to a safer location.

The UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency said the Hoegh Osaka was self-floated at high water and tugs will now tow ship to a holding position in Southampton Water pending a full assessment of her condition. A decision on the next phase of the salvage operation will be made after the assessment, the MCA said.

The MCA made the announcement late Tuesday that salvors would not attempt to refloat the ship at high tide on Wednesday because it was determined that the ship had taken on more water than previously thought. Salvors apparently no longer have that problem, because the ship floated free by itself.

Photos of the refloated Hoegh Osaka show the car carrier still with a severe list, relatively unchanged from when the ship was grounded earlier.

gCaptain is told that a strong ebb tide and strong winds may have played a role in the unintentional refloat. Once the ship was afloat, it drifted SW nearly hitting the West Bramble bouy before being brought under control by tugs.

An update from the MCA said the vessel self-floated at about 1:55 p.m. local time. The vessel is being moved to its new location is just inside Portsmouth Harbour, close to the area called Spitbank, which is about 2 miles east of the original grounding position.  There has been minimal disruption to vessel movements for the port of Southampton and no closure of the port is expected. Queen’s Harbour Master Portsmouth has established a temporary exclusion zone of 300 metres around the vessel

The 51,000 ton, Singapore-flagged Hoegh Osaka was intentionally grounded by the on the Bramble Bank in the Solent after the ship developed a severe list after departing the port of Southhampton. The decision to beach the ship was made by the Pilot and Master over fears that the vessel would capsize in the busy shipping channel.

The vieo from BBC below shows the Hoegh Osaka obviously on the move today: