“Heavy Weather” plan implemented at Golden Ray site

“Heavy Weather” plan implemented at Golden Ray site
A crane working for the St. Simons Sound Incident Response loads a section of the ramp that vehicles used to drive on and off the Golden Ray from the rear of the wreck on June 24, 2020, in St. Simons Sound, Georgia. The removal of the 275-ton ramp began June 18 to reduce the weight of the stern section and will be transported to Gibson, Louisiana, for recycling. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Anthony Clark (Credit: St. Simons Sound Incident Unified Command)

St. Simons Island, GA — Crews working to remove the Golden Ray from the St. Simons Sound have implemented a “heavy weather” plan, anticipating effects from Tropical Storm Isaias.

Crews have secured all equipment. Tugs, barges and cranes working on the overturned vessel have relocated to ensure the safety of the crews and the public.

A large crane brought in to help lift the Golden Ray is safely moored at the Port of Fernandina, according to St. Simons Sound Unified Command.

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In a statement released Sunday by Unified Command, Tom Wiker, incident commander of Gallagher Marine Systems, said “As Hurricane Isaias approaches, the safety of our people, the public, and the environment are our foremost concerns. We are securing our vessels and equipment in accordance with our heavy weather plan and will quickly return to our normal operations as soon as it is safe to do so.

“Please be reminded that our environmental protection barrier was engineered to withstand severe weather conditions and that increased currents and water depth due to storm surges associated with hurricanes are not likely to move the vessel from its present location. We encourage residents to respect the safety zone surrounding the Golden Ray and to heed weather reports and port conditions.”

Removal operations have been delayed due to weather and COVID-19.