Insurers, Lloyd's of London, say in a new report that the cost of dealing with shipwrecks is rising as ships grow in size.
The report, 'The challenges and implications of removing shipwrecks in the 21st century', warns that the cost of dealing with shipwrecks is spiralling and the increase in removal cost is often passed to insurers, reinsurers and ship owners.
Recent examples of expensive wreck removals include the container ship Rena which sank off New Zealand in 2011. So far, that removal has cost USD240m while the highly complex work to take away the ill-fated cruise ship Costa Concordia is still underway.
Lloyd's says that the total cost of the top 20 most expensive wreck removals in the past decade is USD2.1bn and rising. The report shows how increasing vessel sizes and growing cargo volumes are driving up wreck removal costs. In the 1990s, a large container vessel carried 5,000 TEU. Today, the largest container ship has a capacity of 16,000 TEU.
The report can be downloaded here.