Grounded Oil Rig Loaded onto a Carrier Vessel

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The grounded oil rig Transocean Winner was successfully boarded on a Semi-submersible heavy lift ship, the Hawk.  The oil rig was grounded due to a storm at Dalmore on the west coast of Lewis.  The oil rig was positioned over the deck of the partially sunk heavy lift ship. The rig is being transported to Broad Bay after being retrieved off the rocks.

The efforts to transport the rig started late afternoon when the Hawk started pumping out ballast water to lighten its weight and rose out of the water, with the oil rig positioned on deck as cargo.

A spokeswoman for Transocean said last night: “The rig is now on the heavy lift vessel, which is de-ballasting.  Work to secure the rig to the heavy lift vessel is expected to commence in the coming days once a variety of safety measures and assessments are complete.”

A spokeswoman for the MCA said: “I can confirm the rig has been safely loaded to the lift ship, the Hawk.”

Kenneth MacLeod, managing director of Songa Ship management, which manages the Hawk, previously explained: “Usually the rigs we carry are between 10,000 and 20,000 tons. These are specialist ships; they are called semi-submersible transport vessels.  They have very large ballast capacity and a very open deck.  They ballast the vessel under the water when they are fully submerged.  The middle is completely under the water.  He further said, “The tugs tow the rig into position above the deck and the ship de-ballasts and lifts the rig onto the deck of the vessel.  Tugs can tow a rig to a destination but it is very slow and you are really up against the elements, like the rig that crashed recently on the west coast.  A semi-submersible lifts it clear of the water and transports it as a cargo at high speed and optimum safety.”

The procedure was due to be accomplished last night, making the oil rig ready for its journey on to Turkey to be scrapped.

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Source: The Press and Journal

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