Rescue Over, Salvage to Begin

Tuesday, February 24, 2004
The U.S. Coast Guard has concluded its search for five crewmen missing since their offshore supply vessel sank near Pilottown, La., Saturday, and is, as of Tuesday, February 24, overseeing recovery and salvage operations to safely remove the vessel from the Southwest Pass.

The Coast Guard called off its search and rescue efforts at about 5 p.m. after a final search of the area failed to locate any survivors. Coast Guard assets have been continuously involved in the search since they arrived at the scene of the accident at 6:30 a.m. Saturday, February 21. Also assisting in the search were personnel and resources from Plaquemines Parish, the New Orleans Port Authority, the La. Dept. of Fish and Wildlife and the U.S. Navy.

Coast Guard personnel are working around-the-clock to oversee the safe re-opening of the Southwest Pass. A salvage plan from Bisso Marine was submitted to and approved by Coast Guard Marine Safety Office New Orleans Sunday afternoon.

"The Coast Guard is working closely with the owners of the LEE III and Bisso Marine Company, Inc., the company that has the contract for recovery and salvage operations. This is an extremely challenging operation given the size of the vessel and high water levels on the Mississippi River," said Capt. Ron Branch, commanding officer of the Coast Guard's Marine Safety Office and Captain of the Port in New Orleans.

"Safety of the people on scene is paramount. Many people have been working around-the-clock putting this operation together. Every effort is being made to complete the recovery and salvage operations and re-open the river to maritime traffic in a timely and safe manner."

Listed below are some of the details on the ongoing recovery and salvage operations:

· Contracted dive operations started at about 7:30 a.m. today and focused on victim recovery and securing the Lee III for salvage.

· A salvage technical consultant from the U.S. Navy is en route from Washington, D.C., to assist the MSO and will arrive on scene today.

· The Capt W A Bisso Jr and the Little Joe, both dive support vessels are on scene, along with 10 divers and numerous support personnel to conduct around-the-clock salvage operations. The Lili Bisso, the Cappy Bisso and the Boaz, all heavy-lift equipment barges, are due to arrive tonight or early Tuesday morning.

· Environmental cleanup contractors have recovered 630 gallons of fuel oil. About 30,000 gallons of fuel was reported to be aboard the Lee III. (MEDIA NOTE: earlier reports of 5,000 gallons being recovered were inaccurate. The correct amount is 630 gallons).

· 1,000 feet of hard boom, 5,000 feet of sorbent boom, six work boats, three skimmers and 25 personnel from Environmental Safety & Health, an oil clean-up contracting company, are on scene to clean up the lost fuel.

· MSO New Orleans personnel are on scene to help coordinate the recovery and salvage operations.

· There are currently 32 deep-draft vessels waiting to enter the Southwest Pass and 25 waiting to depart. Once the river re-opens, the MSO and its Vessel Traffic Center will work with pilots to develop a plan to coordinate the safe transit of all maritime traffic in and out of the Southwest Pass. According to the state river pilots, by midnight tonight approximately 43 deep-draft vessels will be waiting to enter the Southwest Pass and 45 will be waiting to depart. The Coast Guard Cutter Pompano, an 87-foot patrol boat from Gulfport, Miss., and a rescue helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans were on scene earlier today in the effort to find the missing crewmembers.

The 178-foot offshore supply vessel Lee III sank soon after it and the Zim Mexico III, a 534-foot Antiguan-flagged cargo ship, collided at about 5:20 a.m. Saturday in the Mississippi Delta, about 60 miles south of New Orleans. The cause of the accident remains under investigation by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Maritime Reporter June 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Finance

Grimaldi Orders Three PCTCs

After signing an order for the construction of five new ships two weeks ago, the Italian shipowner  Grimaldi Group has signed another contract for the construction

Caltex Replaces Australian Crew

The 36 Australian crew members of an Caltex tanker refusing to set sail after they were told their jobs would be gone after the next run. MR tanker Alexander Spirit (40,

Teekay LNG Partners Declares Distribution

Teekay GP LLC, the general partner of Teekay LNG Partners L.P. has declared a cash distribution of $0.70 per unit for the quarter ended June 30, 2015. The cash distribution is payable on August 14,

Casualties

Search for Missing after Philippine Ferry Sinks, 38 dead

Divers will search waters in the central Philippines on Friday for 15 people still missing after a ferry carrying 187 passengers and crew sank a day earlier,

New Imagery Allows Viewers to ‘Tour’ WWII Shipwrecks

High-tech underwater cameras help uncovering the secrets of HMAS Sydney   A recent expedition to survey historic World War II shipwrecks has produced a wealth

Philippine Ferry Sinks, 36 Dead

A ferry carrying 189 passengers and crew capsized off the central Philippines in heavy waves on Thursday, killing at least 36 people but the majority of those on board were rescued,

 
 
Maritime Contracts Naval Architecture Navigation Pipelines Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1811 sec (6 req/sec)