29 Jun 2013

Rena accommodation block to be removed

7:26 am on 29 June 2013

The insurer of a wrecked container ship off the coast of Tauranga says the submerged accommodation block located on the stern is to be removed.

The Rena struck the Astrolabe Reef on 5 October 2011.

The Swedish Club says concerns were raised about the possibility that the four-storey block would degrade or collapse in future and release debris that could wash up on the shore.

Senior claims manager Captain John Owen says the insurer recognises the importance of minimising the effects of the Rena's grounding on the community as much as possible.

Te Moana a Toi Iwi Leaders Forum chairman Te Awanuiarangi Black says the less wreckage left in place, the lower the chance of something untoward happening, but he is not optimistic the entire wreck will be removed.

It is expected that removal of the block will start in October this year and take up to 80 days.