VIDEO: Golden Ray: After the fire, the questions

Written by Nick Blenkey
Multiplle vessels spray wateer on Golden Ray wreck following fire

Boundary cooling operations continued on Saturday at the Golden Ray wreck using seawater and a fire monitor system installed on the VB-10000 following a fire inside the wreck on Friday. [St. Simons Sound Incident Response photo.]

The fire that broke out inside the wreck of the capsized car carrier Golden Ray on Friday (see earlier story) had been successfully extinguished by early that evening, according to the unified command that is dismantling the vessels and removing it, section by section, from St. Simons Sound, Ga.

“Early this evening our firefighting teams successfully put out the fire inside the Golden Ray wreck,” said U.S. Coast Guard Cmdr. Efren Lopez, federal on-scene coordinator. “ Safety is our highest priority and every member of the response displayed tremendous commitment to ensuring that emergency plans were followed during the entire fire fighting and evacuation evolution.”

An infrared image of the wreck shows the areas of high heat during fire suppression operations around the Golden Ray wreck on Friday.[St. Simons Sound Incident response photo.]

Firefighting assets remained on station throughout the night to mitigate any potential fire.

Response engineers began post-fire assessments of the wreck and wreck removal equipment on Saturday. The assessment is likely to take several days.

The VB-10000, the giant heavy lift vessel being used to dismantle what remains of Efen Lopez unhooked from Section Three of the wreck on Saturday and will shift away from it to allow for continued assessments for any damage sustained during the fire inside the wreck on Friday.

Tugs use fire monitors to control a fire inside the Golden Ray wreck on Friday. [St. Simons Sound Incident response photo.]

The 150-yard safety zone around the Environmental Protection Barrier around the wreck has been increased to 200 yards for recreational vessels.

The response environmental unit has increased water quality monitoring to daily sampling operations in the vicinity of the wreck site. Safety personnel will continue to monitor air quality in the community using mobile equipment. To date, the monitoring efforts have produced zero detections of hazardous particulate matter.

On-water response teams continue to mitigate very light oil sheens and debris observed around the wreck site. Natural Resource Advisors continue to monitor areas around the wreck site and the Environmental Protection Barrier for any wildlife activity or impacts. Survey teams continue to assess the shoreline to find and remove any debris or other environmental impacts.

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