Heavy-lift vessel frees stranded Transocean drilling rig

Offshore staff

SOUTHAMPTON, UK – The Transocean Winner semisubmersible has been safely loaded onto Offshore Heavy Transport’s semisubmersible heavy-lift vessel Hawk, according to the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA).

The vessel has deballasted and the rig is now clear of the water.

The MCA verification aircraft was on scene yesterday and no pollution was sighted or reported. However, late yesterday some leakage was spotted in the water, which is believed to have been a maximum of 50 L (13 gal) of hydraulic or gear oil. MCA says it is thought to have come from a damaged part of the rig and appropriate counter-pollution measures were taken. 

A further check flight by the MCA aircraft today over the Hawk and the wider area across Broad Bay has found no further oil.

Vessels with counter-pollution equipment will remain on scene until there is no longer any threat of a release from the damaged sponsons. 

Preparations are now being made to begin the sea fastening operations. Assessment of the damage began today, Oct. 7, and other work is starting to prepare the Hawk for its passage to Malta. This could take four or five days to be completed.

The rig ran aground Dalmore Bay, on the Isle of Lewis, on Aug. 8. It was shortly thereafter refloated and transported to Broad Bay, where it has been waiting on a safe weather window to resume removal operations.


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