On Friday, 13 September 2019, US Ambassador to Greece Geoffrey R. Pyatt will travel to Alexandroupolis. While there, he will join Greek Minister of National Defense Nikolaos Panagiotopoulos at the port to observe and receive a briefing on progress in removing the sunken dredger Olga from the Alexandroupolis port. During the visit, they will make statements to media. Attached you will find a fact sheet with more details about the project. For further information or to inquire about coverage, please contact the U.S. Embassy press office by 15:00, Thursday, 12 September.
Alexandrouplis Port Fact Sheet
- The port of Alexandroupoli is well positioned to support exercises in the region due to its existing infrastructure and strategic location.
- As allied and partner nations continue our extensive training programs in the region, the ports in Greece are of significant importance for the flow of personnel and equipment.
- The recent deployment of just under 800 piece of equipment and roughly 400 Soldiers through Alexandroupoli in support of exercise Saber Guardian 2019 in Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania is a perfect example of this.
Dredger Removal Operations Facts:
- The Port of Alexandroupoli has a very capable pier for large cargo ships
- 500 meters long pier
- About 50,000 square meters of open space adjacent to the pier
- A sunken dredger barge sits mostly underwater about 270m from the landward end, which leaves less than 200m of useable pier on the seaward side
- The barge, “Olga,” was a dredging barge which sunk at the pier in 2010 and is now laying on its side with a small portion exposed above the waterline.
- Length/width/draft – 53m/11.5m/2.9m
- Over the years, multiple attempts to remove the wreck have failed, leaving a significant portion of the pier unusable.
- The United States and NATO see the importance of the pier at its full capacity. Therefore, the United States decided to provide the resources to remove the dredger.
- The U.S. Navy leveraged an existing salvage contract with U.S.-based DonJon Marine for the removal work.
- DonJon subsequently sub-contracted the work to Five Oceans Salvage, a Greek owned and operated salvage company.
- The operation includes:
- Two U.S. Navy officers on site
- 20-30 U.S. Navy and U.S. Army personnel supporting remotely
- DonJon Marine has 1-3 U.S. Civilian Contractors on site
- Five Oceans Salvage, with the support of a local Greek dive company, has 9-13 Greek employees on site
- Work began in early August and is expected to take approximately two months.
- Once the removal operations are complete, the pier will once again be capable of supporting ships along its entire 500 meters length.
- The total operation cost to the U.S. is approximately $2.3 million.