Highlands & Islands

Ship to remove Transocean Winner 'could arrive next week'

Transocean rig Image copyright Craig Allan
Image caption The rig Transocean Winner is anchored temporarily off the coast of Lewis

A semi-submersible ship could arrive off the Western Isles next week to move the rig Transocean Winner to a yard in Turkey where it will be scrapped.

The 17,000-tonne drilling rig ran aground at Dalmore, near Carloway on Lewis, in a storm in August.

It remains anchored off Lewis awaiting removal. The rig would be floated on to the transport ship, Hawk.

Hugh Shaw, an official overseeing the salvage operation, said Hawk could arrive on or about 20 September.

Following a public meeting in Stornoway to provide islanders with the latest information on the operation, Mr Shaw told BBC Alba that floating the rig on to the ship would require good weather.

He added that the work would involve a number of small tugs, which should begin arriving off the Western Isles over the next few days.

Transocean Winner was being towed from Norway to Malta, from where it was to be moved to Turkey to be scrapped, when it and the ship towing it were hit by a storm off the Western Isles.

The tow line broke and the rig ran aground on the beach at Dalmore.

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