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OS35 boom removed ahead of heavy swells

Photo by Johnny Bugeja

The boom surrounding the wreck of the OS 35 was removed on Monday in anticipation of heavy swells forecast for the week.

The Gibraltar Port Authority will increase its environmental monitoring while the boom is removed.

Two crane barges being used as part of the wreck removal operation will seek shelter in port.

Last week a heavylift vessel arrived in Gibraltar which will be used to transport the hull of the OS 35 once it has been emptied and cut into two sections.

For now though, the focus is on emptying the wreck of its cargo of steel bars.

A spokesperson for the Gibraltar Port Authority said a total of 27,441 tonnes of cargo had been extracted from the vessel, leaving 6,191 tonnes still on board.

The bad weather expected this week will temporarily halt works but will continue as soon as it is safe to reinstall the boom and get the crane barges back on site.

The decision to remove the boom was taken to avoid any damage that could occur during the anticipated heavy swells.

The port's heightened environmental monitoring during this period ensures that any potential damage to the surrounding marine environment will be minimized.

The Captain of the Port confirmed that safety is the top priority and that the resumption of the wreck removal operation will only happen when conditions are safe.

The removal of the boom and the temporary halt in operations is not expected to have any impact on the overall timeline for the removal of the wreck.

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