The South Korean government is preparing to hear proposals for a salvage project that will recover the wreck of Sewol, the ferry that fatally sank last year. According to the Maritime Executive, the government will assess different contractor bids and rank them based on price and technological capability before June 22.
No matter which method the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries decides to use, the project will face difficulties from the changing weather as well as the currents and winds of the Maenggol Channel where the ship is resting.
The source also says that the body of the ferry, located more than 140 feet underwater, has been corroded, potentially adding to the hazard level of the operation,. The government is willing to invest $91.6 million in the salvage effort. Most of the passengers who were onboard the ferry when it sank are believed to be dead or missing, and nine of those victims’ bodies may be in the wreck.
As the Korea Times reports, the final decision on a salvage candidate is expected by the end of July. That source also quotes the Ministry on the criteria it is using to assess possible providers.
“We will thoroughly evaluate each bidder on its skills to lift the entire ship intact and safely handle any fuel leaks and other potential safety accidents that may occur,” the ministry said. The country began its official pre-salvage work on the Sewol project with a taskforce featuring members from several different organizations early last month.
To ensure proper compensation if a venture doesn’t go according to plan, divers and other personnel need to be covered by commercial diving insurance. Fisk Marine Insurance International can apply policies to both commercial crew and the equipment used during their service.