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WSV puts salvage of the “Verity” out to tender

The Federal Waterways and Shipping Administration (WSV) has now issued a Europe-wide invitation to tender for the salvage of the coaster “Verity”, which sank in the German Bight.

On the morning of 24 October 2023, the 91 m long coaster “Verity” (IMO 9229178) sank as a result of a collision in the German Bight about 12 nm southwest of Helgoland. [ds_preview]

The 90 m long “Verity” collided with the larger bulker “Polesie” (IMO 9488097) and sank within only 20 minutes. The 91 m long “Verity”, which flies the UK flag, was carrying steel coils and was on its way from Bremen to Immingham. The ship is now lying at a depth of 37 m at the position 54° 01.533′ N / 007° 38.334′ E.

The salvage services have now been put out to tender across Europe. This involves salvaging the wreck, the entire cargo, and the fuel, including other water-polluting substances such as oils, cleaning agents, and lubricants. During the salvage work, the contractor must prevent any environmental pollution from the “Verity” and from the ships and equipment used in the salvage operation.

“Due to its position and the fuels on board, the wreck poses a risk to shipping and the environment. Therefore, the contractor must start the work to salvage the Verity immediately after the contract is awarded and, in any case, complete it this year,” explains the WSV.

“No acute danger of a fuel leak” from “Verity”

The specific time frame for the salvage is to be determined by the salvage specialists in consultation with the WSA Weser-Jade-Nordsee. According to the authorities, there is still no acute danger of a fuel leak. WSV vessels carry out routine inspection trips at certain intervals in order to monitor any pollutant leaks.

If any missing seamen are found during the salvage operations, they will be handed over to the relevant authorities (Federal Police/Public Prosecutor’s Office). The services will be commissioned and supervised by the Weser-Jade-North Sea Waterways and Shipping Office.

It is still not clear what exactly happened in Bft. 6 and 3 m high waves. Two crew members were rescued, but the captain was only recovered dead. Four sailors are still missing today. The shipping company Faversham Ships does not want to salvage the wreck itself and has limited its liability for the ship to the maximum sum of €2.3 million. The insurance company will cover the costs up to this amount; the rest must be paid by the federal government.

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