Baltimore Is Finally Free of the Cargo Ship Dali

Vessel is bound for Virginia
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 24, 2024 11:55 AM CDT
3 Months Later, Baltimore Is Free of the Cargo Ship Dali
This image provided by the US Coast Guard shows the US Coast Guard Cutter Sailfish, an 87-foot Marine Protector class vessel, as it prepares to escort the Motor Vessel Dali during its transit from the Port of Baltimore to the Port of Virginia, Monday, June 24, 2024.   (Petty Officer 3rd Class Christopher Bokum/U.S. Coast Guard via AP)

The cargo ship Dali headed out of Baltimore for Virginia on Monday, nearly three months after it lost power and crashed into one of the Francis Scott Key bridge's supporting columns and caused the bridge to collapse. The 984-foot Dali started moving shortly before 8:30am with four tugboats and will be sailing under its own power with a full crew of 22 and six salvage experts, the US Coast Guard said in a news release. The Coast Guard is overseeing the voyage and providing a 500-yard safety zone around the Dali during its trip.

The Dali is scheduled to go directly to Virginia International Gateway to have roughly 1,500 cargo containers off-loaded to reduce draft, the Coast Guard said. The vessel is then scheduled to travel further to Norfolk International Terminal, where it is scheduled to undergo continued salvage and repairs from damage caused during the bridge collapse, per the AP. The Baltimore Sun described the ship as still holding crushed containers on its bow, with a tarp masking a hole in the hull. The timeline thus far:

  • March 26: Shortly after leaving the Port of Baltimore early this morning, the ship lost power and propulsion and crashed into one of the bridge's supporting columns, killing six construction workers.
  • May 20: The Dali was refloated and guided back to port. The vessel had been stuck amid the wreckage, with a massive steel truss draped across its damaged bow.
  • June 12: Officials announced the reopening of the Fort McHenry federal channel, after clearing wreckage from the 700-foot-wide by 50-foot deep channel.
  • Last week: Under an agreement confirmed by a federal judge, members of the Dali's crew were allowed to head home. None of the crew members had been able to leave the US since the crash. Under the agreement, the crew members can return home but must be available for depositions.
  • 2028: That's when officials hope to rebuild the bridge by.
(More Baltimore bridge collapse stories.)

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