The operation to remove the stern section of the container vessel ‘Napoli’ from the Devon coast has reached another milestone.
‘Global Response Maritime of The Netherlands, has now completed positioning all twelve lifting chains under the wreck. The lifting chains were put in place by a new subsea drilling system in less than three weeks. This marks the first total subsea, use of the drilling system in an offshore wreck removal. The drilling system employed consists of a 110-tonne subsea drilling module powering a remote-operated, transponder-guided drilling rod. The first lifting chain was pulled into place on withdrawing the drilling rod.
With all lifting chains in position, the main operational phase will commence in early May. Subcontractor, Hapo, of The Netherlands, will mobilise two 140-metre flat-top barges rigged with heavy mobile cranes, together with two support tugs. A series of 24 chain-pullers, installed on the flat-top barges, will be connected up to the lifting chains ready on location.The two lifting barges will be moored parallel to ‘Napoli’s’ stern. When preparations for the main lift are completed, the barges will be ballasted down, to compensate for the forces acting on the pullers and reduce movement in the swell.