Salvors Refloat Grounded Vessels in Scheldt

Monday, April 16, 2007
Salvage and towage companies Multraship and URS have successfully refloated two grounded vessels in the past week in the River Scheldt. On April 10, the Swedish-flag RoRo car carrier Grande Argentina ran aground off Terneuzen. The vessel, operated by Grimaldi Lines, was enroute from Antwerp when it suffered a complete black-out, ironically within view of Multraship’s headquarters in Terneuzen. Having swung hard to starboard, the vessel grounded on a sandbank.

Working together, salvage teams from Multraship and URS mobilised a total of nine tugs and salvage craft to refloat the vessel in a quick and efficient operation. The salvors then escorted the vessel to Flushing, where an inspection revealed no structural damage, and the Grande Argentina was cleared to proceed with its voyage. On April 15, the same salvors came to the assistance of the Russian general cargo vessel Aleksandrov which, outward-bound from Antwerp with a cargo of steel and machinery parts, grounded on the ebb tide. Although the salvors responded immediately, it was not possible to refloat the vessel on the same tide. But the salvors, mobilising four tugs under an LOF agreement, righted the vessel in the early hours of April 16, and escorted it to Flushing, where a diving inspection revealed no serious damage.

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