DIVE TEAMS have managed to refloat the Banff registered fishing boat Prospect and tow her to the Greenhead Base.
The vessel that sunk at the north end at Lerwick harbour more than two weeks ago was held in position by two huge cranes while inspections were taking place.
The successful refloating operation started on Wednesday afternoon when the salvage team was able to lift her off the seabed with the help of 15 large flotation bags.
Taking advantage of slack tide at around 1am on Thursday the vessel was then taken under tow by the Lerwick Port Authority’s two harbour tugs Knab and Kebister.
Once at the Greenhead Base she was pumped dry. Divers had previously patched up the damage to her hull.
Harbourmaster Calum Grains congratulated everybody for doing a “superb job”, adding that he was relieved to have the vessel alongside the quay.
“Ocean Kinetics did a superb job in preparing the prospect for lifting and for towing.
“That allowed us to take advantage of a really high tide on Wednesday night and perfect weather conditions.
“Ocean Kinetics have used the time they had over the last few days to put a really good lifting system in place to made sure the ship was completely stable when she was lifted.
“The very high tide also allowed us to tow the Prospect a little bit deeper,” he said.
The vessel’s owners and insurers are expected to arrive in the isles shortly to start with the removal of the 22,000 litre of fuel she still has on board.
The 20 metre wooden vessel sunk after hitting a submerged rock at the north end of Lerwick harbour on 5 August. Three previous attempts to lift her were not successful.
To view nighttime pictures of the lifting operation go to http://www.ivanhawick.com/newest/photos/page1.html