When the vintage 100-foot World War II Tug,USS Wenonah,took on water and sank at her berth August 17,2009 on Treasure Island,she created an oil spill and a continued threat to the environment due to remaining hydrocarbons and other hazardous materials on board. Thanks to our collaboration with the U.S. Coast Guard – Sector San Francisco,and the California Department of Fish and Game (Office of Spill Prevention and Response),the vessel was quickly recovered to mitigate further environmental damage.
We were contracted by the US Coast Guard – Sector San Francisco and quickly dispatched a team from our office in Rio Vista,CA. Salvage specialists,divers and heavy rigging equipment arrived at the scene while naval architects calculated weights and analyzed the vessels strengths and lifting characteristics.
Working in 30 feet of water,our divers dug trenches in the thick mud and debris beneath the wreck and maneuvered heavy chains underneath it in preparation for lifting. We contracted with American Bridge/Fluor to acquire the services of the “Left Coast Lifter,” a shear-leg crane working in San Francisco Bay,to assist in re-floating the vessel. With a lifting capacity of 1,700 metric tons,the “Left Coast Lifter” is one of the largest floating cranes operating in the continental United States.
Our crews attached the chains to the crane and quickly commenced lifting operations of the 440-metric ton vessel. US Coast Guard – Pacific Strike Team recognized a unique opportunity for training and boarded the vessel to de-water the hull under our oversight while divers surveyed and patched the vessel.
On August 31,with the vessel back in her berth and safely afloat,we delivered the vessel to the US Coast Guard – Sector San Francisco,which is working with other agencies to determine the vessel’s future.
“Synergy between state and local agencies ensured the unified command was able to focus resources in an efficient and timely manner,” said LCDR Agustus Bannan,U.S. Coast Guard – Sector San Francisco. “Serving the general public and our stakeholders,we capitalized on the cooperation and good will of Global Diving and American Bridge that brought us the needed resource to complete the job.”