The wreck of the Sewol ferry, which sank almost three years ago with over 300 people on board, may emerge from the water by April 5, South Korea’s Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries (MOF) said.
The 6,825-ton ship sank off Jindo Island on April 16, 2014, killing 304 people, 250 of which were high school students on a school trip.
Preparations are currently being carried out to lift the vessel and transport it to the Port of Mokpo for inspections.
The hull of the ship will be lifted by two jack-up barges and the operation is expected to last ten to fifteen days, South Korean news site Korea Herald reported.
The salvage project, conducted by a Chinese consortium led by Shanghai Salvage, started in June 2016.
However, bad weather and technical problems postponed the project several times.
The operation to recover the 146-meter ferry, which lies at a depth of some 44 meters, is expected to cost around USD 72 million.
Last year, MOF said the ship would not be cut but hoisted in one piece in order to keep any remains of the still missing people inside the wreck.
World Maritime News Staff