El Faro Salvage Operations

What do we know about the continued salvage operations?

The best I can put together is that the USCG and Tote have stepped down completely and the NTSB is taking over salvage operations. Latest report I’ve heard is the closest navy salvage ship with an ROV is a week out.

But I also here that the salvage contractors, Crowley and T&T Salvage, have boats continuing to search and recover surface debris.

There is at least one unidentified body know to be still floating in a gumby suit but I can’t find any attempts to uncover it.

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Also, do we know who the NTSB Investigators are?

[QUOTE=cmjeff;171099]

There is at least one unidentified body know to be still floating in a gumby suit but I can’t find any attempts to uncover it.

[/QUOTE]

Hopefully they attached a tracking device to it.

Doesn’t the Navy still operate an Atlantic acoustic detection and tracking system, including a listening station in the Bahamas, that would have heard the bulkheads rupturing and escaping sir as the ship sank and the impact with the seabed? Shouldn’t the Navy already know exactly where El Faro is located?

they knew exactly what happened whey someone accused the Liberty Service of running down a fishing boat off Gloucester about a decade ago. Amazing technology then, wonder what it’s like now. And too bad the truth wasn’t sensational enough to make the news.

The Navy knew with SOSUS that the Thresher had sunk and exactly where back in the early 1960’s.

I’d be very disappointed in our fantastically expensive Navy with all of their Star Wars systems, if they don’t know exactly when and where El Faro went down.

[QUOTE=tugsailor;171127]Doesn’t the Navy still operate an Atlantic acoustic detection and tracking system, including a listening station in the Bahamas, that would have heard the bulkheads rupturing and escaping sir as the ship sank and the impact with the seabed? Shouldn’t the Navy already know exactly where El Faro is located?[/QUOTE]

I believe that since the end of the Cold War and with Federal budget cuts, SOSUS was deactivated and only come parts of it were turned over to research uses. I can’t imagine there is funding for it to be kept active for any period other than when needed for scientific projects.

SOSUS after the Cold War

SOSUS was gradually condensed into a smaller number of monitoring stations during the 1970s and 1980s. However, the SOSUS arrays themselves were based upon technology that could only be upgraded irregularly. With the ending of the Cold War in the 1990s, the immediate need for SOSUS decreased, and the focus of the US Navy also turned toward a system that was deployable on a theatre basis. In effect, the end of the Cold War eliminated much of the justification for maintaining IUSS at its full capability, with the existence and capabilities of SOSU and IUSS being declassified in 1991. Although officially declassified in 1991, by that time IUSS and SOSUS had long been an open secret.

Alternate or dual-use partnerships exist with the University of Washington Applied Physics Laboratory for Ocean Acoustic Tomography, NOAA VENTS, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, Texas ARL, and several other organizations.

Commander, Undersea Surveillance (CUS), operates as the immediate superior in command (ISIC) for all IUSS sites, whereas operational command of those same sites is held by COMSUBPAC.

Which is what they want you to believe…

[QUOTE=Fraqrat;171133]Which is what they want you to believe…[/QUOTE]

actually the USN has a super ooper dooper secret listening array in the high arctic under the ice to keep tabs on Czar Pootin’s moves to control that ocean and to counter his moves in the north they are secretly building all the LCS vessels as Ice Class A5 which why those vessels cost $350M each. They are also fitting those LCSs with photon torpedoes and cloaking devices as well. Don’t think for one minute that the US Navee is asleep at the switch. WWIII in the ice is a foregone conclusion and we are going to beat them Rooskies right out the gate…Yessiree we are!

The Navy does still operate sonar Out of Andros Is. in the Bahamas. I was on the Island back when I was in the CG and we went there to service the buoys marking the channel. Raytheon had two tugs there on contract that had some really hi-tech equipment on the back decks. This has been some time ago but I know it was in or around 2004-5. When we got off the boat on the base they put stickers on our ID cards that restricted our access to the gym and the Tiki Hut bar on the beach. I never made it past the sand…

An acoustical sensor system would be very expensive and time consuming to build, but I do not see where it would be that expensive to operate. Given the very long lead time to build it should tensions arise, I cannot picture the Navy giving it up unless it had already been replaced by something better. At least I hope not.

Considering our strategic oil and gas assets in the GOM, I would think the Navy is quite aware of who and what comes and goes in those waters both surface and subsurface. I expect we will hear the wreck has been found in a very short time.

Look at the pages starting in the 20’s

http://www.uscg.mil/hq/cg5/cg545/docs/documents/Patriot.pdf

yeah I think it’s pretty cool that they can even differentiate and identify an AC current pump running or not.

but the Andros Island acoustic range is for testing I believe so would not be active 24/7/365

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[QUOTE=tugsailor;171197]An acoustical sensor system would be very expensive and time consuming to build, but I do not see where it would be that expensive to operate. Given the very long lead time to build it should tensions arise, I cannot picture the Navy giving it up unless it had already been replaced by something better. At least I hope not.[/QUOTE]

if the USN has a listening array in the GoM then they have managed to keep that secret utterly airtight for all these years…something I highly doubt. Has anyone ever encountered the USNS ZEUS hanging around down there?

There are thousands of “private” “research” buoys sitting on the bottom or drifting around (gliders) that are recording who knows what all over the place, all of the time in the name of science. I guarantee you there is some data to be analyzed. The report I posted used private whale listening buoys, for example; buoys paid for many degrees of separation away from their use in that case. (LNG terminal companies)

You should know this being in the research vessel industry.

[QUOTE=cmjeff;171099]What do we know about the continued salvage operations?

The best I can put together is that the USCG and Tote have stepped down completely and the NTSB is taking over salvage operations. Latest report I’ve heard is the closest navy salvage ship with an ROV is a week out.

But I also here that the salvage contractors, Crowley and T&T Salvage, have boats continuing to search and recover surface debris.

There is at least one unidentified body know to be still floating in a gumby suit but I can’t find any attempts to uncover it.

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Also, do we know who the NTSB Investigators are?[/QUOTE]

Being on the other side of the world and with the main stream media having forgotten this “incident” I just wonder what is happening around locating the wreck of El Faro, if anything?

I have some specific questions:
Are there still somebody out there looking for items floating on the surface, some of which may have clues as to how events developed?
There should be large amount of debris floating around, incl. the second lifeboat, the life rafts and other items of LSA that would be likely to float up, even if the ship capsized quickly.

Has the body reported to have been spotted been recovered? Since one body in a survival suite was located, others of the crew may have had time to done theirs, in which case their bodies may be out there somewhere, heading for the Sargasso gyre.

The EPIRB was reported to have sent only a short “ping”. It may have been manually activated, but if it was functioning right it should be transmitting for days after activation. It is “unsinkable” and should still be floating around somewhere, possibly with data that may help locating the wreckage.

The VDR consist of two parts, one of which is “free float” and fitted with a locator, which should send it’s position via satellite for days, if not weeks. It contains the most important data from the main VDR capsule, which is presumably gone down with the ship, but designed to send out acoustic “pings” for up to 90 days.

If this had been an Airliner, there would be extensive search going on stll. The search for MH 370 is still ongoing after 1 1/2 year.

PS> Two more question: Since this vessel was on a “domestic” run between two US ports, was she IMO SOLAS compliant?
Since her regular run was within 32N/32S, are Immersion Suites required to be carried, or may be just something left behind from her days on the Alaska run?

Just heard from someone working on the operation that the USNS Apache is underway to conduct salvage operations.

Found a press release/article for it too:

[QUOTE=ombugge;171825]The EPIRB was reported to have sent only a short “ping”. It may have been manually activated, but if it was functioning right it should be transmitting for days after activation. It is “unsinkable” and should still be floating around somewhere, possibly with data that may help locating the wreckage.[/QUOTE]

An EPIRB does not contain any data, it is not a VDR. Also, there is no guarantee it ever released from its mount on the bridge wing.

[QUOTE=ombugge;171825]The VDR consist of two parts, one of which is “free float” and fitted with a locator, which should send it’s position via satellite for days, if not weeks. It contains the most important data from the main VDR capsule, which is presumably gone down with the ship, but designed to send out acoustic “pings” for up to 90 days.[/QUOTE]

The VDR was not two parts and was not the float free type, an ROV will have to recover it. Also, the pinger is rated for 30 days, not 90.

[QUOTE=ombugge;171825]Since this vessel was on a “domestic” run between two US ports, was she IMO SOLAS compliant?[/QUOTE]

I don’t believe it was required to be but it was SOLAS compliant with the proper certificates.

I wonder what the Apache is going to do when they get there with the ROV? 4 point anchor in 15,000 ft of water? It doesn’t have DP.

Well I guess they have to find her first. Maybe by then they’ll have the rest of the plan worked out.