ROV stopped leakages
In response to the Atlantic Maritime Prefect's letter of March 13, 2019, the Grimaldi Group chartered the Norwegian specialized vessel "Island Pride" equipped with a ROV (submarine robot) to inspect the wreck, define its condition and the nature of the damage suffered and to remedy the pollution. The underwater investigations carried out by the ROV, in the presence of an observer mandated by the maritime prefecture of the Atlantic, made it possible to establish that the wreck of the ship was upright, set straight on a sandy bottom, buried several meters on its rear part. Several slight leakages of oil escaped through the vents on some of the ship's seawater ballast tanks and from its fuel tanks. These hydrocarbon leaks explained the presence of low-intensity iridescence on the surface above the wreck. In order to stop these leakages, the "Island Pride" proceeded for several days until April 16 to shut off the vents concerned with the ROV. The "Island Pride" then checked the tightness of the work done on the wreck and completed the survey before leaving the area on April 19. Air assets will continue to regularly monitor the area as well as the EMSA (European Maritime Safety Agency) Cleanseanet satellite system in order to ensure the absence of oil spills. The state services will remain mobilized and attentive to any new developments regarding the situation of the ship. French report with photos: https://www.premar-atlantique.gouv.fr/communiques-presse/grande-america-point-de-situation-sur-les-operations-dans-le-golfe-de-gascogne-communique-de-presse-n-25
Observation is continued
The underwater investigations of the "Grande America", , carried out by the Italian shipowner Grimaldi, were continuing off La Rochelle. The Norwegian offshore ship "Island Pride", equipped with ROV, returned to the location from Brest on April 9, to further examines the wreck in a depth of over 4,000 meters. The wreck was found resting upright on a sandy bottom and was buried several meters with its rear part. Aerial observations by a Falcon 50 of the French Navy and a Beechcraft 350 of the French Customs showeed some low intensity iridescence on the water surface above the wreck. These residues of oil and oil disappeared under the effect of the natural mixing of the sea and were not recoverable by the BSAA vessel "Argonaute" which was sent back to the port of Brest by the end of last week. Air assets continued to monitor the area, as well as the EMSA satellite system Cleanseanet, the European Maritime Safety Agency, to ensure that there were no significant oil spills from the wreck.
Anti pollution forces in dry dock for cleaning
While the device in the sinking area of the "Grande America" were significantly reduced, two of the ships engaged in clearance operations arrived this week in Brest, the "VN Partisan" and "VN Sapeur". During a dry dock stay, planned to last about ten days, their hulls which were in contact with the hydrocarbons released by the wreck will be cleaned. Grimaldi fianced the thorough cleaning and restoration of the ships and their equipment. While the contract also includes the cleaning of heavy equipment to fight against pollution, other ships will benefit from the same grooming, probably towards the end of the month. These are the "Argonaute" and the "Rhône" of the French Navy. The first was still mobilized in the Bay of Biscay around the sinking area, the second is now engaged on another mission. Regarding pollution, the last flights made this week showed a disappearance of the oil front and a lack of significant recovery from the wreckage. Above the wreck a non-permanent iridescence remained on the surface, which disappeared with the mixing of the sea.Upload News