Demolition resumes on Georgia shipwreck after big fire


BRUNSWICK, Ga. — Salvage crews on the coast of Georgia resumed sawing apart the remains of an overturned cargo ship Thursday nearly two weeks after the wreck caught fire.

An anchor chain measuring 400 feet (122 meters) attached to a towering crane returned to work Thursday slowly cutting through the shipwreck’s steel hull, said Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Himes, a spokesman for the multiagency command overseeing the salvage effort.

Engineers inspecting the Golden Ray determined it was safe to continue demolition work for the first time since the wreck caught fire May 14 and burned for several hours. Inspectors are still assessing whether parts of the hull were weakened by the fire, Himes said, and will adjust plans if necessary before remaining sections are cut away from the ship and lifted for removal.

The Golden Ray capsized with about 4,200 automobiles in its cargo decks shortly after leaving the Port of Brunswick on Sept. 8, 2019. Efforts to remove the ship by cutting it into eight giant chunks began in November. Roughly half the ship remains partly submerged in St. Simons Sound.

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