Japan's Beached Ships Cost $1M To Return To Sea

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How do you return a 400-tonne ship to Japan's waters, after it washed ashore in March's brutal tsunami? Using giant cranes that hoist it 30ft above the ground, lowering it onto a massive 192-tyre trolley normally reserved for trains.

It's a process that's expected to take 2 - 3 days per ship, and cost $1 million each. Luckily the insurers have agreed to pay for the retrieval of each of the five ships, a deal which was finally agreed upon three months after they became beached in Kesennuma, part of the Miyagi province in the north-east of Japan.

Another two months of repair-work, and the five ships rescued from the port-town will be ready to set sail once again. Unfortunately not all of Kesennuma's land-dwelling ships have such fortunate outlooks—another 17 20-tonne plus 1,000 smaller fishing boats were also beached in the town, with some of the larger ones being too far away from the coast for saving so it'll be the scrap-metal yard for them. Scotsman via Japan Probe]