Tonnes of Rena debris still being hauled in

More than 50 tonnes of container wreckage has been removed from the seabed around the Rena wreck this week.

A barge and crane have been used to collect the container scrap and debris from inside the exclusion zone. Some pieces of wreckage were as large as a hatch cover.

Braemar Howells operations manager Neil Lloyd said scrap was brought in by the barge-load.

"This is the end point to a huge amount of painstaking preparation, involving divers, engineering work around the lifting, and the pre-rigging of scrap. We are making every effort to push on with this work into the weekend, before a forecast deterioration in the weather."

A total of 955 containers have been recovered, and 66 more remain in identified locations but are yet to be recovered.

The tender process for the next stage of salvage work - wreck removal - is continuing.

Wreckage retrieval is continuing further away from Rena, at depths of up to 70m or 80m. A remotely operated underwater vehicle with robot arms was being used to pre-rig identified container scrap.

On land, clean-up teams continue to focus on Matakana Island, the Coromandel and areas further down the East Coast.

Debris gathered over recent days is mainly plywood and refrigerated container foam.

Any queries about the oil spill response should be directed to the Bay of Plenty Regional Council.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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