A fire started during wreck removal operations for the Golden Ray wreck in St. Simons Sound, Georgia on Friday, sending a thick plume of black, billowing smoke into the air.
The fire reportedly started Friday morning during pre-cutting operations involving hot work on section three of the wreck.
Fire fighting is on-going using an installed fire suppression system on the wreck itself and also by crews on the VB10000 and smaller “bear cub” tugs inside the Environmental Protection Barrier.
Flames could be seen coming from one of the exposed sections of the vessel, opposite from the VB10000 heavy-lift crane vessel hovering above it. A spokesperson for the St.
Simon Sound Incident Command, Coast Guard Petty Officer Michael Himes, told gCaptain earlier that the exact source of the fire at present was unknown, although it started during pre-cutting operations to prepare section three for the next cut in the salvage and wreck removal.
Himes noted that fire has always been within the scope of possibility, however it’s hard to believe that a fire of this magnitude was part of the plan.
An update from the incident command earlier said all non-essential personnel had been evacuated safely from the VB10000 crane vessel.