After a long absence we have revisited the Rena shipwreck off the New Zealand coast to find that she is being cut to pieces by salvage teams using very large cutting torches. Mistakes in this line of work are often fatal.
Questions were asked in months past as to the probable disposition of the Rena wreck, and now the answer is confirmed as breaking crews cut the container-ship hulk into pieces and haul them away. We are taking this opportunity to share some truly remarkable photos that come to us courtesy of Maritime New Zealand, the official government agency that has done such a remarkably good job of managing this disaster. After the upper works have been dismembered, final cutting below the water line will be completed, leaving very little debris to mark the passing of this event.
We have cropped the photos in order to emphasize what we believe will be some interesting features. Careful inspection will reveal 4-foot-long cutting torches that are wielded by highly skilled operators. Dismembering a ship is not work for the ignorant or careless. If the wrong members are cut, or even if the right ones are cut in the wrong sequence, disaster can be the instant result. Collapsing steel can crush or slice a body in an instant.
Enjoy the views - and let's all be very glad that this was not a supertanker brimming with bunker oil.