Norwegian frigate HNoMS Helge Ingstad was successfully transported to the country’s main navy base after spending close to four months almost completely submerged following the collision with tanker Sola TS in November 2018.
The frigate arrived at the Haakonsvern navy base on the BOA Management-operated semisubmersible barge “Boa barge 33” on Sunday, March 3.
The lifting operation itself started on February 26 and saw heavy-lift vessels Scaldis and Rambiz lift the frigate off the sea floor and transport it 15 nautical miles from the Hjeltefjorden fjord to Hanøytangen where the ship was loaded onto the barge for the final stage of her transport.
To remind, HNoMS Helge Ingstad and Maltese-flagged tanker Sola TS collided on November 8, outside of the Sture terminal in Øygarden Municipality in Hordaland County, Norway. The frigate was heavily damaged in the collision and was driven onto the rocks in attempt to prevent her from sinking completely. Several days later, however, the frigate slipped from the rocks into deeper waters and spent over four months almost completely submerged.
The Aframax oil tanker did not sustain damages below the waterline in the collision and only minor fuel spill had been detected around the vessel.
Norway’s defense ministry said the next steps in the process will be to save as much equipment from the frigate as possible. Once this is completed, the navy will be able to better assess the ship’s condition and make a definite decision on its future.