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Engineers enter final preparations for raising wrecked cruise ship

Saturday, September 14, 2013 - 01:32

Sep. 14 - Salvage crews are expected to begin Monday the raising of the Costa Concordia cruise ship that crashed into rocks off an Italian island in January of 2012. Nathan Frandino reports.

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After 18 months of lying on its side on the shore of a Tuscan island, the Costa Concordia may finally return to port. But first, the nearly 1,000-foot-long cruise ship wrecked on the rocks off Giglio island must be parbuckled. (SOUNDBITE) (English) SENIOR SALVAGE MASTER AT TITAN SALVAGE, NICHOLAS SLOANE, SAYING: "Parbuckling means rotating it upright." That's Nicholas Sloane, a senior salvage master for the U.S. firm Titan Salvage. Sloane and hundreds of workers have been tasked with raising the deadly wreck so she can be towed away. (SOUNDBITE) (English) SENIOR SALVAGE MASTER AT TITAN SALVAGE, NICHOLAS SLOANE, SAYING: "So on the in-shore side you'll see a whole lot of red towers and they hold underneath her belly. And on the outboard side on top of the big boxes called sponsons you also see those red hydraulic pulling machines and they'll pull from the outside. So they'll pull from underneath and on top, and that rotates the ship upright." The salvage crews are in their final preparations, gearing up for Monday's parbuckle. They've already pumped 18,000 tons of cement into grout bags to make a mattress underneath the ship's keel. And they've also installed inflatable pollution barriers to collect any debris or oil that could spew from the ship when she's hauled upright. Sloane says he's expecting to feel nervous the night before what will be one of the biggest marine salvage operations in history. (SOUNDBITE) (English) SENIOR SALVAGE MASTER AT TITAN SALVAGE, NICHOLAS SLOANE, SAYING: "No problem at the moment maybe by tomorrow night we will start getting a bit of nerves and Monday morning, excited." The mechanical lifting of the shift is expected to take between 8 to 10 hours. Thirty-two people were killed in the January 2012 accident and two of the bodies are still missing.

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Engineers enter final preparations for raising wrecked cruise ship

Saturday, September 14, 2013 - 01:32