Divers pause to repair spreader assembly

U.S. Pacific Fleet Public Affairs
Oct. 30, 2001

While conducting a routine safety inspection of the spreader bar assembly that was used to move Ehime Maru and is now positioned above the vessel, Navy divers discovered bimetallic corrosion on the assembly’s flotation device straps.

The corrosion on these straps, which hold the positively buoyant devices in position, has rendered a potentially unsafe condition for surface supplied diving operations. Surface supplied diving operations have been temporarily suspended until repairs can be completed. The Navy expects to resume diving operations once repairs have been made and all safety requirements have been met.

As a result of these safety concerns, divers exited the water Oct. 30 at 4 p.m. Repairs are expected to take approximately 24 hours.

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Revised 10/30/01 at 9:35 p.m. (HST)