The U.S. Navy Minesweeper USS Guardian that ran aground on January 17 while transiting the Sulu Sea , will have to be dismantled and removed in sections, reports the military.com.
The Philippine Coast Guard is still examining work activities planned under the salvage operation, which is expected to last over a month.
“Our naval architecture and salvage experts have reviewed all possible alternatives, and our only supportable option is to dismantle the damaged ship and remove it in sections,” reports the military.com citing the Pacific Fleet spokesman.
“We have the right team of experienced professionals to conduct this complex operation and to ensure that it is done safely while minimizing damage to the surrounding marine environment. We expect the first floating crane to arrive in a few days and the dismantling to take over a month — we will work to conduct the operation as quickly as safety, weather and environmental protection allows.”
The navy had removed 15,000 gallons of diesel fuel and 671 gallons of lubricating oil from the ship.
The crew of the USS Guardian returned to their homeport of Sasebo.
Two heavy lift ships fitted with cranes are en route to remove the grounded vessel.
USS Guardian (MCM-5) is a U.S. Navy Avenger-class mine countermeasures ship. The second ship to bear that name, she was laid down on 8 May 1985 by Peterson Builders, Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.
She was launched on 20 June 1987 and commissioned on 16 December 1989.
World Maritime News Staff, January 31, 2013