Evergreen, owner of the Ever Forward ship that remains aground off Baltimore, has engaged Donjon-Smit as the salvage company in the operation to refloat the vessel. The ship has been stuck in mud since Sunday night, when it left the Port of Baltimore en route to Norfolk, Virginia.
Underwater inspections indicate that the ship was not damaged in the grounding. While no fuel leakage has been found, the ship’s crew has been ordered by the US Coast Guard to conduct soundings every four hours of all tanks, bilges and voids to monitor for pollution and report changes in stability, draft or position, or signs of oil discharge.
Sal Mercogliano, a maritime historian at Campbell University in North Carolina, pointed out in a Twitter post on March 15 that the Ever Forward’s bow is almost 4 m out of the water, indicating just how high up on the sand the ship is positioned.
“This is going to be a prolonged salvage to get her off,” predicted Mercogliano.
Evergreen noted that the weight of cargo is a factor in the plan to refloat the ship, potentially indicating that it may become necessary to remove containers from the ship to refloat it.