News / Europe

Costa Concordia Salvage Going as Planned

  • The Costa Concordia is seen over the rooftops at Giglio harbour, Giglio Island, July 13, 2014.
  • A damaged portion of the cruise liner Costa Concordia is seen in detail at Giglio harbour, Giglio Island, July 13, 2014.
  • A front-on view of the Costa Concordia during a refloat operation at Giglio harbour at Giglio Island, July 14, 2014.
  • The Costa Concordia surrounded by tugboats during a refloat operation at Giglio harbour at Giglio Island, July 14, 2014.
  • The Costa Concordia at Giglio harbour, Giglio Island ,July 13, 2014
  • The Costa Concordia is seen during a refloat operation at Giglio harbour at Giglio Island, July 14, 2014.
  • The Costa Concordia is surrounded by tugboats as it begins its journey to Genoa for dismantling, from Giglio harbour at Giglio Island, July 14, 2014.
The Costa Concordia's Final Journey
VOA News

The second stage of removing the wrecked luxury liner Costa Concordia from a reef near an Italian island before being towed away for scrapping began  Tuesday. 

Engineers secured the final chains to the Costa Concordia, preparing the shipwrecked liner to be towed away from Giglio Island where it sank 2 1/2 years ago, killing 32 people.

The 114,500 ton Concordia ran aground off Giglio Island in January 2012 and has been stranded there since, as engineers set up one of the biggest maritime salvage operations in history.

Now the rusting hulk of the once-gleaming white ship, more than twice the size of the Titanic, is on course to leave the Tuscan coast on July 21, engineers said at a press conference.

“Work has proceeded all night, still 4 chains to be connected,” the wreck removal project organizers said on their official Twitter feed around midday.

Authorities said that the first stage of the operation, which took place on Monday, when the shipwreck was refloated from an underwater platform, had gone well.

Towed to Genoa

Ten boats will accompany the Concordia up the Corsica Channel alongside teams tasked with collecting any debris, testing the water for toxins and spotting any approaching dolphins or whales to prevent any collisions, the French news agency AFP reported.

Emergency equipment - 800 meters of oil booms and infrared sensors to detect oil on water at night - will be used in case of toxic leaks from the ship, AFP reported.

The convoy will travel at just two knots an hour for safety reasons. However, rough weather could leave the damaged luxury liner at the mercy of the waves.

Once it reaches Genoa, scrapyard workers will drain the water left inside, divide the ship into three parts and dismantle it over a two-year period, AFP reported.

Meanwhile, Costa is expected immediately to begin efforts to clean up the shipwreck site off Giglio and return the island to its original condition, according to AFP.

The vessel, which struck rocks after sailing too close to the shore, was righted in a complex “parbuckling” operation last September, leaving it resting on an underwater platform.

On Monday, air was pumped into 30 large metal boxes, or sponsons, attached around the hull. The air forced water out of the sponsons, lifting the boat 2 meters off the platform.

Tug boats then heaved the boat - owned by Costa Crociere, a unit of Carnival Corp., about 30 meters from shore, readying it to be towed north to Genoa - about 200 nautical miles north - to be broken up for scrap.

The ship's captain, Francesco Schettino, is on trial accused of manslaughter, causing a shipwreck and abandoning ship. He is fighting the charges.

The entire operation to remove the Concordia from the reef and float it to Genoa will cost 1.5 billion euros, said Michael Thanm, Costa Crociere CEO.    

Some information for this report provided by Reuters, AP and AFP.

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs