What Did the Costa Concordia Salvage Project Entail?


Quick Answer

The salvage project for the Costa Concordia began in April 2013 and involved building underwater platforms to support the leaning ship, attaching cables to slowly roll the ship upright, pumping water out of the ship and then towing it to the Genoa salvage yard. Titan Salvage headed the operation.

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Full Answer

The Costa Concordia cruise ship ran aground on the island of Giglio off the Italian coast in January 2012. It lay partially submerged until April 2013, when Titan Salvage initiated a plan to right and then tow the ship.

Work began with the building of underwater platforms to support the ship during the operation. Workers attached caissons, or large metal boxes, to the exposed side of the ship and then filled with them water to provide weight.

Stabilization was complete by September 2013. The next phase began with attaching cables to the platforms and slowly pulling the ship upright. Known as parbuckling, the method used the weight of the water-filled caissons along with the cables to slowly right the ship.

Once upright, workers drained the water from the existing caissons. They installed additional air-filled caissons on both sides of the ship to provide buoyancy and pumped out as much water as possible from the ship's hull. However, the caissons gave the vessel enough lift for towing. The Concordia arrived in Genoa on July 27, 2014.

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