The Vienna Professional Fire Brigade went on an unusual mission on Saturday night. An 80-meter long motor cargo ship has taken on water at the Vienna Marina. Firefighters were able to stabilize the vessel and prevent it from sinking.
Shortly before midnight, the crew of the corn-laden ship discovered a leak in the engine room at the rear of the ship. According to the fire department, a significant amount of water entered under the cabins through a crack about 15 centimeters long. The pumps on board could not handle the volume. Thus the 80 meter long vessel was listed. The crew alerted the police over the radio and asked for help.
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When the fire brigade arrived, the port side deck was slightly out of the water and there was an immediate danger of sinking, the fire brigade said on Saturday. A crew of four had to abandon ship. And all operations were carried out by fire department divers using special safety precautions. Emergency services can only operate from boats; They are supported from shore by a turntable ladder.
Very limited space for many large pumps
Submersible pumps came into operation as soon as possible. Due to the tightness of the engine room, the fire department was only able to use a large submersible pump. By draining the water from the engine room, some of the floating engine oil was also removed.
Therefore, an oil barrage was built below the damaged vessel. A fire service drone equipped with a thermal imaging camera was also used to accurately detect and observe oil spills from the air. Integrated emergency services were able to contain oil spills more effectively and prevent environmental hazards.
The ship was stabilized
Despite rapidly increased pumping out operations, the upper deck on the port side remained submerged. The possibility of removing part of the cargo and repositioning the ship was also explored, but proved logistically difficult. Fortunately, the massive deployment of the Vienna Fire Department had an effect and the ship came out easily. The water has stabilized a bit again.
Firefighters worked to temporarily contain the leak. With wooden wedges and sealants, the crack can be closed while the small amount of water that enters can be handled by the ship's own pipes. Thus the sinking of the motor cargo ship was successfully prevented.