The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration has sold a ship from the Beaumont Reserve Fleet for more than $1million, the first time under the current program that a ship has brought such a price. International Shipbreaking, Ltd., in , , will pay $1,151,727 for the ship Adonis, now moored at the Beaumont Reserve Fleet site in . Three other government-owned, obsolete ships are also being sold to the company for an additional $173,297: the , the and the Buyer.
These sales stand in contrast to most ship disposal contracts in recent years, which have involved the federal government paying to have its obsolete ships recycled. High worldwide prices for scrap steel have recently made such ships more valuable to recyclers, who sell the steel and other materials recovered from the ships.
Two of the ships being sold, the and the Cape Canaveral, are breakbulk freighters and are located at the James River Reserve Fleet site in . The was built at the Todd Shipyard in in 1961. The Cape Canaveral was built at the Avondale Shipyard in in 1963. When these two ships depart the site for recycling, they will be the 70th and 71st vessel to do so since January of 2001.
The Adonis, a liquid-bulk tanker, was built by A.G. Wesser Seeback of in 1966. The other ship being sold, the Buyer, is also in the Beaumont Reserve Fleet, and was built as a breakbulk vessel by National Steel & SB in in 1960.
The Maritime Administration stores ships at three National Defense Reserve Fleet sites: the James River Reserve Fleet, the Beaumont Reserve Fleet, and at the Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet in When ships become obsolete, the Maritime Administration arranges for their disposition in an environmentally-sensitive manner.