Transocean Winner’s fate still undecided

The fate of the Transocean Winner remains uncertain nearly a month after the 17,600 ton drilling rig ran aground off Scotland’s Isle of Lewis in stormy seas.

UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) officials say the oil rig remains stable and secured to eight anchors in Broad Bay where assessments are on-going. These include underwater surveys by Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) and divers.

“Good progress is being made but no decision has been finalised as to where the rig might be taken next,” MCA said in a statement, adding that there is no signs of pollution around the rig.

Divers are working to recover around 40 pieces of debris around the site at Dalmore Bay where the Transocean Winner grounded on 8 August after breaking its tow line, reportedly en-route to Malta for scrapping.

The debris range from laptop size to scaffolding poles with one piece thought to weigh about 90kgs. All pieces, which have been recovered by manual or mechanical means, are being stored temporarily at Carloway.

“The divers are working very hard to make sure that they are picking up all the bits found on site,'” said Colin Mulva, the Secretary of State’s deputy representative for Maritime Salvage and Intervention.

“But there may well be previously undetected debris that may appear following bad weather. A future programme of surveys will be discussed and put in place by Transocean in an effort to ensure the area is clear of debris and safe for members of the public.

A Temporary Exclusion Zone (TEZ) remains in place at Dalmore Bay.

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