Titan Maritime recently completed a wreck removal of M/V Coral Bulker
in Viana de Castelo, Portugal
. The 28,454-dwt bulker went aground with a cargo of wood chips and timber en route from Tallinn to Viana de Castelo. Rough seas and high winds forced the vessel to ground next to the port village's breakwater on Christmas Morning 2000. As a result, the vessel's double bottoms were breached, which led to the flooding of the engine room. Upon award of the contract, Titan immediately began mobilization of equipment. A total of 25 Titan personnel, including a salvage master, diver/salvors, on-shore coordinator and hydraulic engineers were sent to the site. Titan's approach to this wreck removal was different in that they proposed to roll the whole ship onto the breakwater, enabling them to dismantle the vessel while working in the dry. Rather than using pulling forces to right a vessel, forces were applied to roll the vessel over. Titan proposed a reverse pairbuckling operation, which was accomplished by first emptying the ship of its entire cargo of wood chips and timber. With the cargo holds empty, Titan began removing the ship's superstructure. Titan then cut the vessel in two by using a 17-ton drop chisel suspended and repeatedly dropped from one of the vessel's deck cranes, which was intentionally left for this purpose.