TITAN Salvage successfully cut the stern section and engine room from the No. 5 cargo hold of the sunken freighter New Flame, then lifted the 3,000-ton section from the seabed off Europa Point and transported it to the Port of Gibraltar, marking a major milestone in what is believed to be the largest wreck removal operation being undertaken in the world today.
"All of us associated with the project were elated with results of this major initiative," said Jim Conroy, TITAN's Salvage Master on the New Flame project. "We were able to cut the engine room from the cargo hold in about six hours using two TITAN chain pullers. The following day we lifted the complete engine room and stern section of the New Flame from the sea bed off Europa Point with the heavy lift crane RAMBIZ and internal lift bags and pontoons fixed to the hull of the wreck."
The section was transported June 10 by TITAN into the port of Gibraltar where it is now suspended in the rigging of the RAMBIZ in calm and sheltered waters. There, the TITAN team is working to remove pieces of the section to reduce its total weight so the lift bags and pontoons are no longer needed and it can be lifted completely out of the water by the RAMBIZ and placed aboard a barge for transport to an approved scraping facility.
The New Flame sank following a collision while exiting the port of Gibraltar in August of last year. The remains of the wreck now lie in the open ocean off Gibraltar's Europa Point. The ship was loaded with over 42,000 tons of scrap metal, which was being transported from New York Harbor to Turkey for recycling.