Kea Trader removal will not be before 2019

Local authorities have announced that the arrival of heavy equipment to remove the wreckage of the Kea Trader will not take place until mid-2019.

The vessel grounded on Durand Reef on July 12th last year, one of the major hull and cargo losses of 2017.

The authorities said that the construction of specific maritime resources was necessary to remove the ship, which is now in two sections.

The salvors have access only about 40% of the time because of frequently unfavourable weather conditions. The nearest port is 140 miles away, and helicopters cannot be used because of a lack of deck space.

Shanghai Salvage Co (SSC) is carrying out a more accurate mapping of the reef, which includes new debris, to permit boats to navigate safely during the operation. Pieces of broken wreckage were to be lifted with air bags and loaded onto a crane barge. Some 650 workers have already spent 26,000 hours cleaning isolated beaches and bights in the surrounding areas.