Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based Resolve Marine Group concluded
its salvage work on the 510-ft. retired Navy vessel that prematurely sunk off the coast of Key Largo, Fla., on May 17 before crews could scuttle it to create the world's largest artificial reef.
The Resolve team sank the ship on June 10 at 6:35 p.m. (EST) on its starboard side, according to Rob Bleser, project director for the Key Largo Chamber of Commerce Artificial Reef Committee
The vessel, which is currently lying on its side at the bottom of 130 ft. of water, was sunk with the assistance of two tugboats providing 110 tons of pull and a series of 70 inflatable lift bags, attached to certain areas of the vessel's port side to provide approximately 500 tons of buoyancy.
The reef will reportedly be open to scuba divers as early as this weekend.