Stricken tanker to be broken up in Bahrain
Manama, October 9, 2012
Chemical tanker Stolt Valor, which was severely damaged in an explosion in the Gulf on March 15, is to be broken up in Bahrain, an official from Asry said.
Arab Shipbuilding and Repair Yard Company (Asry) chief executive Chris Potter said, in a first for Bahrain, experts would be flown into the country to oversee the breaking up of the vessel.
"The owners of the vessel have been given permission to dispose it off and they have decided to break it up in Bahrain," Potter told our sister newspaper, the Gulf Daily News.
"It was initially thought the ship would be towed away but that is not going to happen."
He said the process of breaking up the vessel would begin by the end of the month.
"Asry has the capability and the expertise available to assist the breaking up in every way and we are going to be offering that expertise," added Potter.
"That is the reason the owners have decided to carry out the work here."
He said stainless steel from the ship, after it is broken up, would be exported while other steel would be disposed of in Bahrain.
The Stolt Valor had been brought to Bahrain for extensive repairs at Asry, but Potter earlier said the cost of repairs would be more than its actual value.
The tanker was adrift off Bahrain for weeks after the tragedy in which one sailor went missing and 23 others were rescued by the US Navy. A decision to tow it to Bahrain was taken in May.
A fire onboard the Liberian-registered vessel resulted in an explosion, which crippled it on its way from Jubail, Saudi Arabia, to Bahrain.
It was carrying 12,700 metric tonnes of a volatile flammable liquid chemical (methyl tertiary butyl ether), petrol additive and several tonnes of lube oil and other additives.
The fire was extinguished on March 22, while the removal of all pollutants - both chemical cargo and fuel - was completed by April 29, with no spillage during the transfer.
The cause of the original explosion is still unknown.
Bahrain was on red alert for more than a week after the incident due to fears of a chemical spill from the tanker. – TradeArabia News Service