Update: Tonight’s refloating attempt was unsuccessful.
A second attempt to refloat the Ever Forward will take place this evening using seven tugboats, a U.S. Coast Guard spokesperson has confirmed to gCaptain.
The refloating effort is expected to take place during the next high tide at around 6 p.m eastern time.
The operation will involve seven tugs, two more than the unsuccessful operation to refloat the ship on Tuesday, the Coast Guard said. Dredgers were currently continuing to dredge around the vessel in preperation for the refloating attempt.
Ever Forward grounded back on March 13 after straying from the Craighill shipping channel in Chesapeake Bay as it departed the Port of Baltimore with a pilot on board. AIS showed that the ship was travelling at about 13 knots when it exited the dredged channel and came to a screeching halt in around 25 feet of water. It’s draft was reported to be 13 meters (42.6 feet).
Officials said previously that if yesterday’s first attempt to refloat the vessel was unsuccesfful, a second attempt would take place April 3-4.
The five tugs involved in yesterday’s operation were Signet Warhorse II, Atlantic Salvor, Atlantic Enterprise, April Moran and Lynn Moran. The biggest and most powerful, Signet Warhorse II, is 12,500 horsepower and 153 metric tons bollard pull.
AIS showed the five tugs from yesterday as of 3:50 p.m. eastern. The firefighting tug Z-One arrived on scene at around 5:30 p.m., according to ship tracking and maritime analytics provider MarineTraffic.
The configuration yesterday involved two tugs pulling on the starboard quarter, one pulling on the stern, and two pushing on the port side.
The National Weather Service has issued a small craft advisory for the Chesapeake Bay in effect until 4 a.m. Friday with southeast winds gusting to 25 knots and seas around 3 feet. This system is expected to bring high tides of around 2 feet, about 0.5 to 1 foot more than normal.
It seems salvors will try to take advantage of higher high tides from the passing system to attempt to refloat the ship.
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