Crews complete work on Davy Crockett cofferdam

PORTLAND, Ore. - The barge Davy Crockett sits enclosed by a cofferdam in the Columbia River near Camas, Wash., April 18, 2011. The cofferdam will contain pollutants while work crews dismantle the barge and remove it from the river. Photo provided by Davy Crockett Response Unified Command.

Photo provided by Davy Crockett Response Unified Command.

PORTLAND, Ore. – Work crews completed installation of an 850-foot metal sheet-pile cofferdam around the barge Davy Crockett Monday.

The cofferdam includes an impermeable liner, which will trap any oil, tar balls and other pollutants in the enclosure while crews dismantle the vessel.

“Installation of the sheet pile barrier and an impermeable liner around the Davy Crockett is a significant step in controlling the environmental threats from this broken vessel,” said Coast Guard Capt. Daniel LeBlanc. “It will allow contractors to begin the process of carefully cutting the vessel into pieces, cleaning and removing the pieces from inside a protective cofferdam.”

The Davy Crockett Response Unified Command plans to begin the vessel’s destruction Thursday. Workers will separate the 229-foot stern section from the rest of the vessel first. This cut will take place underwater. After the cut, the stern will be refloated, which involves pumping off several hundred thousand gallons of ballast water.

Until then, crews will stage equipment and ensure the cofferdam is functioning according to plan.

For more information on the Davy Crockett Response, visit the response website.

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