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Salvage team goes aboard grounded oil rig

The Transocean Winner oil rig was on the rocks at Dalmore beach, near Carloway
The Transocean Winner oil rig was on the rocks at Dalmore beach, near Carloway

A team of eight salvors is making its way aboard the drilling rig Transocean Winner which is grounded off the Isle of Lewis.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said it would carry out a full assessment of the rig and intend to work to make it habitable so that they can remain on it overnight.

Work is also underway to help provide a supply line for the team to get equipment and supplies on board the platform.

Rope access technicians have created a safe alternative access after the prevailing weather conditions made it too difficult to winch the team down to the installation.

The team from Transocean and salvage company Smit will study its diesel oil tanks to establish whether they can transfer the fuel to unbreached tanks to make it safe before refloating the rig.

Work is also continuing to identify the safest route for when the time comes.

An additional aircraft is likely to be brought in to assist the salvage operation.

A 300-yard exclusion zone around bthe rig remains in place covering the sea and air, which means no drones are permitted in the area.

UK Government salvage minister Hugh Shaw said: “Once the assessment is underway, we’ll have a much better idea of what we’re dealing with, which will mean a more detailed salvage plan can be drawn up and put into place.

“We’ve made a commitment to keeping people informed locally and we intend to keep to that.

“Once I’m happy the plan is ready, we’ll be sharing it with community leaders and the community as a whole.”

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