Salvaging operations for a barge that has been listing 50 metres off Mukka beach since Tuesday is likely to begin on Thursday morning.

Public Relations Officer of the Mangalore Special Economic Zone Limited Ramachandra Bhandarkar told The Hindu that salvaging operation was likely to begin around 10 a.m., but would be subject to the weather and sea surface condition.

MSEZL has hired Orissa-based Paraxit Industries Limited on contract to dredge 1,200 metres in sea off Mukka beach to lay the pipeline for effluent discharge from industries which would come up in MSEZ into the sea.

The barge has been anchored off Mukka beach since Friday.

It started listing on Tuesday morning unable to withstand the waves, said Mr. Bhandarkar. The starboard (right side) of the barge submerged by Wednesday evening.

A team of experts from the Orissa-based company met here on Wednesday to discuss options on how best to deal with the barge.

Mr. Bhandarkar said the company needed a 250-tonne crane to tow the barge back to the shore and had been seeking the help of a big company such as Udupi Power Corporation Limited. Such a crane would require two days to tow the barge back to the shore.

According to the company, the loss is estimated to be around Rs. 4 crore, Mr. Bhandarkar said.

Six crew members who were onboard the barge, safely reached ashore in a tug-boat on Tuesday.

250-tonne crane needed to tow the barge back to the shore