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France Telecom-Orange dismantles burnt-out repair ship

By , ITWeb
Namibia , 20 Sep 2012

France Telecom-Orange dismantles burnt-out repair ship

Telecommunications company France Telecom-Orange says it will destroy its cable ship which was involved in a fire incident off the Namibian Coast two months ago.

On August 8, a fire broke out on the ship, which is called ‘Chamerel’, while it was returning from a repair operation on the Sat3-Safe undersea broadband cable off the coast of Namibia in the Atlantic Ocean.

All 56 crew members were safely recovered by a Namibian fishing vessel without injury or incident, leaving the ship stranded in the ocean.

“SMIT Salvage, the company in charge of pumping out and recovering the remaining fuel has now confirmed that the vessel must be dismantled before being removed from its current location,” said Tom Wright, France Telecom-Orange press officer.

"The exact process and plan of work for this second phase are under review before decision,” Wright said.

He further confirmed that the initial phase of the rescue operation was complete.

“The first stage of the salvage operation has now been completed.

"The remaining fuel and other pollutants have been successfully pumped out of the vessel without incident.

"At this stage of operations there is no significant pollution around the vessel,” said Wright.

However, he could not give reasons for the cause of the fire, saying that France Telecom-Orange could not provide any further information for the time being.

The telco firm operates six cable ships and is one of the leading players in the industry.

Four vessels are dedicated to maintenance services in the Mediterranean basin, the Atlantic Ocean and the Indian Ocean.

Two vessels are specialised in laying new telecommunications submarine systems worldwide.

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