PANAMA CITY –
PANAMA CITY - U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet deployed personnel to Vasco Nuñez de Balboa port in Panama to conduct a salvage operation Oct. 29.
Sailors from Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit Two (MDSU 2) and personnel from Navy’s Supervisor of Salvage and Diving (SUPSALV), at the invitation of the Government of Panama, will remove the sunken vessel blocking use at a strategic port at the entrance to the Panama Canal. This operation will also provide opportunities for National Aero Naval Service Divers (SENAN) to dive alongside the U.S. diving team for subject matter expert exchanges. These interactions promote mutual understanding of, and interoperability between, both nations.
The operation to remove the sunken vessel, which has blocked Pier 3 of the Vasco Nunez de Balboa port since 2004, will aid accessibility to a critical Panamanian port. The project, which is expected to continue through the month of November, began after Panama asked the U.S. for assistance with the salvage project in May 2020. The initial survey was conducted by MDSU 2 in September 2020.
Once the vessel is removed, all debris recovered will be turned over to a local recycling center to ensure proper disposal of any waste.
U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet supports U.S. Southern Command’s joint and combined military operations by employing maritime forces in cooperative maritime security operations to maintain access, enhance interoperability, and build enduring partnerships in order to enhance regional security and promote peace, stability and prosperity in the Caribbean, Central and South American region.