USS Cole, one of United States’ best naval ships was destroyed by terrorist bombings in the year 2000. Following that, the ship was brought to a Yemenite port for the purpose of restoration with the help of a technology known as the float-on/float-off (Flo-Flo) ships. These ships are also known as Heavy Lift Vessels. The heavy lift vessel that was used to cargo USS Cole from Mississippi to Yemen was the M/V Blue Marlin.
The M/V Blue Marlin is a Dutch ship that was built in the year 2000 as a float-on/float-off or a heavy lift vessel that can be partially submersed. The Blue Marlin’s cargo carrying capacity is around 30,000 tons and the ease with which the 505 feet and 6,800 ton USS Cole was shipped from one part of the world to another, proves that the ship was designed to endure and carry cargo through.
The main reason the M/V Blue Marlin was constructed was to provide a sort of base or anchorage to oil rigs. It has to be noted that the heavy lift vessel has several tiers which lower themselves into the water as and when required. This feature is the main USP of the Dutch naval vessel. Because of these tiers, the weight load of the cargo above is adequately balanced without any damage to it.
It has to be noted that all such heavy lift vessels including the Blue Marlin have cranes to lift and place the cargo on top of them. The total lift-off capacity of a crane at the very first lift is around 100 tons. This, once again proves the authenticity and reliability of a heavy lift vessel and more importantly, of the Blue Marlin in particular.
The main objective of heavy lift vessels such as the Blue Marlin is to provide cargo carrying facility to warships to ports and dry-docks for the purpose of repairing. It was only with the help of such a technology, that a very important naval warship was able to get restored back for a new naval life.