In the history of the cargo ship Golden Ray, the final point will soon appear. The other day, the first of eight sections was cut off from him in order to deliver it by barge to the recycling center. The spectacle is fantastic – a mighty Versabar VB 10,000 crane rises above a huge car transporter overturned in shallow water like a giant predatory animal, which, with the help of a strong chain, ruthlessly cuts and tears metal. Right along with the contents of the ship’s holds, which remain filled with thousands of brand new cars.
The Zolotoy Luch auto transporter crashed on September 8, 2019 near St. Simons Sound, US Georgia. 23 minutes after leaving the port of Brunswick, the ship gave a sharp heel, capsized on board and ended up in shallow water. It had 4,200 new cars on board, plus full tanks of fuel, which they managed to pump out only by the fall of this year. It was considered inappropriate to save the ship, so the question arose about its disposal.
The huge 200-meter ship was divided into 6,000 metric ton sections each, as the Versabar VB 10,000 crane’s lifting capacity is limited to 7,500 tonnes. Originally designed to lift fragments of destroyed oil rigs, as part of this mission, it works with the barge Julie B. Powerful winches pull a strong chain that cuts through the car carrier’s hull, cutting through all seven of its decks at once.
This is a difficult and dangerous job – when they started to lift the first cut off section, the cars inside fell from it. I had to pull on a giant net to catch all the debris falling from the ship. The spectacle delights documentary filmmaker Josh Gillen, who is filming the operation. And really, when else will you see how the giant ship is opened like a tin can?