SWEL were approached by a Marine Salvage Company with a view to managing the compliant removal of two fishing vessels from a harbor in Cornwall. The vessels were both of a wooden hull, and had fallen in to a state of disrepair.
The first vessel to be removed was a small lugger type fishing vessel, the mast had been removed but most the the below desk equipment was till in place including engines and fuel tanks, which had been emptied by the vessel owners prior to the removal commencing.
|The internals were removed, and transported of
site via licensed carrier. There was a not great deal of metal in the
boat, and the wooden elements of the boat were badly rotten.
The vessel had originally operated as a sailing boat (aided via a deck mounted capstan winch), and as such was very heavily ballasted, the keel had also been modified on numerous occasions and was impossible to cut using conventional methods. This was because at some point the keel had been extended down wards using a 100mm x 120mm box section, which was filled with concrete. This was a stubborn combination.
|Once the keel had been cut the vessel was then separated in to
sections ready for lifting (via heavy HIAB). Some of the sections
weighed up to 8 tons, and were on the safe limit of limiting for the
Overall the vessel contained approximately 30 tons of wood, and around 2 tons of metals (steel and iron).
The second vessel to be recycled was some what larger than the first, 21 meters long, 6 meters in the beam. Height varied from 3.4 meters to 4.3 meters.
|After the heavier deck items had been removed we prepared to
move up the boat to the land ward end of the quay. The boat was re-floated and
pulled along to her final resting place. Having been neglected for close to a
decade the boat had lots of leaks and the re floating took a number of tides
before success was achieved.
Thermal cutting was avoided where possible, with good use being made of conventional methods, as pictured!
|Lifting out the sections was challenging, the
space restrictions limited the size of the crane that could be used.
Having successfully completed these two vessel removals / ship recycling projects, SWEL have identified various weaknesses in the process, particularly on the side of environmental mitigation. We can apply mitigation methods that we have leant for other environmental sectors such as contaminated lad so as to effectively deal with issues such as bilge water.
Dismantling a small ship requires a very large amount of paper work, as well as the practical considerations there are tens of legal and protocol based considerations that have to be made also.
Ship Recycling in the UK, involves the overlap of marine, terrestrial environmental, safety regulations, and as such should not be thought as a a soely practical exercise.
Click on any of the below images to enlarge.
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