In September 2019, the MV Golden Ray, a 660-foot cargo ship carrying over 4,000 cars, capsized in St. Simons Sound off Brunswick, Georgia. The Donjon-Smith salvage team immediately went to work, rescuing the four engineers trapped inside the engine room and safely removing the 320,000 pounds of fuel oil on board.
Since then, Texas-based T&T Salvage has been removing the hull from the sound in sections. In November, it used a chain to cut off a substantial portion of the ship, revealing the cars trapped inside. To do so, it utilized a Versabar VB-10000 lift vessel, a dual-barge crane with a 7,500-ton capacity.
A pulley system attached to the vessel runs a steel chain along the bottom of the sunken cargo ship, which it grinds back and forth at a rate of seven feet per minute to cut through the ship. The complete salvage will involve cutting the hull into eight sections, each of which will weigh between 2,700 and 4,100 tons.