Giant Chain Rips Through Dozens of Cars as Capsized Cargo Ship Gets Chopped Up

Anybody interested in half a Hyundai?

St. Simons Sound Incident Response

The saga of the MV Golden Ray, a 656-foot-long car carrier built in South Korea, is finally nearing its end. For those unaware, shortly after midnight on Sept. 8, 2019, the ship started to list over to the side as it departed the Port of Brunswick in Georgia with 4,200 used Hyundais, Kias, and other used cars onboard. Eventually, it capsized in shallow water, and a salvage operation to clean up the mess has been in the works ever since.

Sunday, after months of waiting, the first section of the ship was removed with the help of a giant ship-cutting chain, and images of the automotive carnage were released. The first slice of the massive ship cut by the chain—which is basically like the biggest backpacking chainsaw ever—reveals dozens of vehicles either chopped up just like the ship or in a truly sorry state after months underwater. It's reported that mostly Hyundais and Kias are onboard; however, this first section reveals a diverse mix, including Chevy trucks and several single-cab short-bed Ram pickups.

To be clear, this is just the first section to be cut off. Several more slices will be made, with more pictures like these surely on their way. All of the massive pieces that get cut off the ship are also getting loaded onto a barge and sent off to be recycled, so they won't simply be dumped to the bottom of the ocean as previously reported. 

As far as the fate of the cars goes, they're all likely to be written off. That doesn't mean there still aren't good parts left, though. One can imagine that most of the vehicles' alloy wheels, for instance, are still in reasonable shape, and many of the cars that weren't submerged underwater may have a slew of parts that would still be good to use. Whether or not anyone will be able to purchase these parts is unknown.

The crew running the salvage has set up a perimeter around the site to catch any oil, fluid, or debris that leaks from the vehicles during the incident, so don't think you can just show up with a big magnet and snag a free car, either. Authorities also say that anybody attempting to fly a drone over the site will face legal consequences, as this would interfere with the operation.

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