Vines Creek Wreck Removal

Another complex wreck removal PMG have recently completed was the 32m steel vessel “Erin Maree” which was located in Vines Creek, Mackay.

The vessel was required to be removed as part of the Queensland Government’s War on Wrecks Program.

This particular wreck removal was especially challenging due to the extremely shallow location the wreck was located. Vines Creek is a tributary of the Pioneer River, and is a notoriously shallow waterway. At low tide the vessel was completely out of the water sitting high and dry on a sandbank.

The removal utilised a 40T excavator fitted with hydraulic shears to cut the vessel up into liftable sections. The excavator was mounted on PMG123 – a 36m x 12m flat top barge. Also involved in the project was Sheerlegs, our 24m x 16m pedestal crane mounted barge. Getting this big equipment into a very shallow mangrove creek was challenging. Both these barges were tandem towed Townsville - Mackay by our new addition to the fleet - Sea Charlie, which is a sistership to our PMG Tarka. Both vessels are Damen 2609 Shoalbusters.

Once the equipment was established on site, either side of the Erin Maree, the removal method was to cut the vessel into smaller sections with the hydraulic shears, then Sheerlegs lifted these pieces onto the PMG123. Once all sections of the vessel were removed and placed onboard PMG123, both barges were moved out of Vines Creek on suitable tides, then towed home to Townsville for recycling of the metal