Golden Ray removal will involve largest lift vessel built in the U.S.

Written by Nick Blenkey
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T&T Salvage installed third and fourth lifting lugs on Golden Ray on April 17. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Kip Wadlow

Salvage operations to remove the capsized car carrier M/V Golden Ray from St. Simons Sound, Georgia, will involve the use of the largest lift vessel built in the United States, the VB-10,000 twin-gantry, twin-barge catamaran VB-10,000, designed and owned by Versabar, Inc., New Orleans.

On April 17, T&T Salvage installed the third and fourth of a total of 16 lifting lugs on the Golden Ray. The Unified Command (USCG, Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Gallagher Marine Systems) working on the salvage project says that two lugs will be installed on each of the eight sections of the vessels. The lifting lugs will be used as a connection point between the rigging of the VB-10,000 and each section of the Golden Ray. The lugs are designed to distribute the weight of each particular section during the cutting and lifting operation.

Deployed for the first time in 2010, the VB-10,000 is a U.S. flagged, Jones Act compliant heavy lift construction vessel which can offer several unique capabilities for deepwater projects. The vessel is classed by ABS as a Maltese Cross A1 Barge HLDK DPS-3 (twin hull construction vessel). The vessel has eight retractable, azimuthing thrusters.

The Versabar video below shows the vessel being used in a decommissioning operation.

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