Blister Tanks Installed on Costa Concordia

The Titan/Micoperi website for the project now shows preparations to turn the stranded ship upright are 77 percent complete.

The latest step to be completed in the project to turn the stranded cruise ship Costa Concordia upright, so it can be floated away from the Italian island Giglio, is the installation of two blister tanks on the ship's bow. An Aug. 27 release posted on the website maintained by the Titan Salvage/Micoperi salvage operation indicated the two steel tanks have been set in place.

Earlier this year, the companies said they expected to turn the ship in September.

"The two blister tanks are special sponsons that provide a net buoyancy of about 4,000 tons and will support the bow during the next three phases of the process: the rotation of the wreck into a vertical position (the so called "Parbuckling"); the resting of the wreck on the artificial seabed; and the refloating," it stated.

Titan Salvage is a member of the Marine Response Alliance, an organization of U.S.-based companies that respond to maritime emergencies. The MRA will host a "Navigating US Waters" seminar on Sept. 4 in Hamburg, Germany, to discuss salvage operations in U.S. waters and compliance with OPA 90, the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 that was enacted by Congress after the Exxon Valdez oil spill. OPA-90 requires tank vessels carrying Class I-IV oils as cargo to develop a Vessel Response Plan explaining how the crew will respond to a release of oil from their vessel and identifying response resources that may be called upon in the event of an oil spill, including a contracted source for salvage, lightering, or firefighting. The VRP requirement is expanding to non-tank vessels this year as a result of a federal law enacted in 2004, and the MRA is helping to educate shippers about the change.

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