Officials have confirmed that the parbuckling of the Costa Concordia has been completed after a 19 hour operation and the ship is now sitting in its final upright position on underwater platforms. Oil booms were placed around vessel to contain any pollution or oil trapped in the ship, but no spill was spotted during the operation. The next step in the Concordia salvage is to stabilising it and preparing for it to be re-floated. Giant buoyancy tanks will be attached before it is towed away for scrap in the following months.
Salvage operations may take up to 12 hours with the live stream continuing through September 17, 2013. After the parbuckling procedure is completed, the salvage may continue for an additional month while crews prepare the vessel to be re-floated using the the giant buoyancy tanks welded onto her hull.
After 18 months lying on it’s side, the Coast Concordia is slowing sinking further into the sea. Reports state there is concern the cruise ship may collapse under its own weight. Weakened by the grounding while rust eats away at the steel hull, the vessel has compressed some 3 meters. Recent inspections have found the bow has dropped deeper into the water. Plans to remove the vessel has been stalled by harsh sea conditions, but the salvage company has announce they would have one chance to pull the vessel upright and float it away sometime mid-September. The salvage team would use multiple cranes slowly lifting the Costa Concordia over a 12 hour period.
Another note: The salvage operation extracted 96 tons of granite from the 70-meter long gash along the Concordia’s hull.