The Unified Command responding to grounded and capsized car carrier Golden Ray (IMO 9775816) has started placing rocks next to the hull to slow down erosion around the vessel, starting October 28th.
Strong area tidal currents in the St Simons Sound, of the port of Brunswick, Georgia, have been causing erosion and transporting sediment. Once the vessel is completely dismantled and transferred out of the sound, the rocks will be removed using excavators with sieve buckets.
About 6,000 tons of rock have been delivered from several rock quarries in Georgia. The rocks are being transported by barge and placed on the seafloor using knuckle boom excavators and GPS for accuracy. Real-time sonar technology will be used to guide the placement of the one to three inch aggregate rocks next to the hull.
The Army Corps of Engineers and the Georgia Department of Natural Resources have reviewed and approved the operation, while engineers work to finalize a vessel removal plan.
The vessel partially capsized on September 8th while heading out to sea with 4,200 vehicles on board. The pilot, Captain Jonathan Tennant, deliberately grounded the vessel in response to a yet-to-be-revealed emergency onboard. All onboard were eventually rescued safely. A fire has also occurred onboard the vessel. The investigation into the cause of the accident is continuing. More than 250,000 gallons of fuel have so far been removed from the Golden Ray, The Unified Command is developing plans to disassemble the vessel in place. A 150-yard safety zone around the Golden Ray remains in effect; the Unified Command has said that the impact on commercial traffic has been minimal.
2017-built, Marshall Islands-flagged, 71,178 gt Golden Ray is owned by GL NV24 Shipping Inc care of manager Hyundai Glovis of Seoul, South Korea. ISM manager is G-Marine Service Co Ltd of Busan, South Korea. It is entered with North of England Club on behalf of Hyundai Glovis Co, Ltd.