After colliding with an underwater obstruction in the Mississippi river, a down-bound fully laden bulk carrier suffered a flooded forepeak tank and could not trim to a shallow enough draft to continue her transit.
As the ship was stuck at anchor in the middle of the river, its owners contacted an independent marine surveyor for assistance and Phoenix International went to the incident site, deploying a team to assist the stranded vessel.
The Mississippi River is not ideal for diving operations with a 5 knot current and no visibility. Thus, the repair team decided to perform the inspection and repair from inside the vessel by diving into the flooded tank from the mooring deck.
The divers opened the tank top, assessed the extent of the damage and formulated a repair plan that would allow the vessel to pump out a significant percentage of the flooded tank.
In addition, it was determined that there were multiple hull breaches, the largest approximately 2 meters by 2 meters in diameter, directly in the bow, ahead of the forward-most swash bulkhead. There were also a number of hull breaches aft of the large hole and aft of the forward swash bulkhead.
The team developed and executed a repair that allowed the vessel to continue its transit down the river and across the Atlantic to offload cargo at the scheduled discharge port before continuing to drydock for permanent repairs.