"Murmansk" demolition in final phase

The pier around Murmansk has taken three years to build. Photo: Norwegian Coastal Administration

The dry dock around the wreck of the Russian cruiser “Murmansk” is now sealed. Within weeks the contractor will start the final phase of demolishing the old battleship.


On December 24th in 1994 the 1955-built cruiser “Murmansk” was being towed from its home port towards India for scrapping. Off the coast of Finnmark the towline of the decommissioned Russian cruiser broke and it ran ashore near the small community Sørvær. In 2009 the Norwegian Government decided to remove the wreck. However, it has been a comprehensive job with several setbacks.

Now it is close to an end. The contractor AF Decom got the dock around the wreck of the cruiser “Murmansk” sealed in April. As of mid May the dock is almost empty of water as the photos from the Norwegian Coastal Administration show. Only studies of the wreck and a few preparations remain before they can start demolishing the cruiser.

- We have finally succeeded in getting the dock watertight and “Murmansk” is now out in the open. We have chosen not to drain the pool completely because we do not want to expose the construction of unnecessary stress. We can easily demolish most of the ship as it is situated now, says project manager and senior adviser Knut Arnhus in the Norwegian Coastal Administration according to their web site.

The wreck is in very bad condition since waves and hard weather has torn it for almost 20 years. The contractor will not try to get into the ship before it has been opened thoroughly from the outside, and then tear it apart piece by piece.