The wrecked Costa Concordia cruise ship, which has been resting on its starboard side for more than a year, is expected to be moved to an upright position this month, according to CBS News. The ill-fated luxury cruise liner dominated headlines in January of last year when it struck a rock and capsized off the Italian coast, killing more than 30 people.
A Major Salvage Operation
Since the disaster, the Costa Concordia has been the subject of one of the largest ocean salvage operations ever recorded and has involved nearly 500 salvage operators. Coming up with a plan to turn the 114,000-ton ship to an upright position, a maneuver called parbuckling, required months of preparation, with the actual feat delayed by adverse weather conditions and other complications.
How Will the Ship Be Turned?
While an official date for the parbuckling of the ship has not been set, the final phase of preparation for righting the ship has been completed. That phase included installing two enormous tanks on the bow of the ship to stabilize it during parbuckling and prevent the ship from sustaining further damage. If everything goes according to plan, the cruise ship will sit on six steel platforms situated on the sea bed after it is turned upright. Rotating the ship is expected to be a noisy, nerve-wracking process lasting eight to 10 hours, the article explained.
Once the cruise ship has been turned upright, it will wait out the winter in its new location. After the parbuckling, the ship will be searched for two bodies that were never recovered from the wreckage. Safe deposit boxes on the cruise liner will also be searched and the items returned to their owners. Eventually the Costa Concordia will be removed, towed to the mainland and dismantled.
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