It will take at least three weeks to remove all the fuel from stricken ship Costa Concordia, Italian owner Costa Cruises announced.
A total of 952 cubic meters of fuel has been pumped out of four tanks located in the forward part of the ship since work began on February 12 – almost a month after the vessel struck rocks of the coast of the island of Giglio with 4,200 people on board.
A further 1,428 cubic meters of fuel is still to be removed from 13 tanks, of which 576 cubic meters is in the forward part of the ship.
“If the sea and weather conditions remain favourable, all of the fuel still on board the Costa Concordia should be extracted within three working weeks,” Costa said, based on a schedule drawn up by the salvage experts Neri/Smit.
Pumping has continued around the clock since the afternoon of February 12.
“Since the outset Costa Crociere's priorities have been to guarantee maximum safety, the least possible environmental impact and protection of the environment of Giglio and the island's tourism industry, while carrying out defueling within a reasonable length of time,” the cruise company said.
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