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Bringing the Cole Home

October 19, 2000

To repair the $1-billion guided missile destroyer Cole, the Navy will first have to have it transported from the waters of Yemen to Norfolk, Va. The Navy awarded a $4.5-million contract to a Norwegian company to carry the 8,600-ton ship aboard the firm's huge heavy-lift vessel Blue Marlin.

The Cole

Sophisticated sonar equipment is housed inside a rubber dome on the bow, which will hang off the Blue Marlin's deck so it will be protected.

The Blue Marlin

Carrying capacity: 30,000 tons

Estimated weight: 56,000 tons

Deck area: About 77,000 square feet

Cruise range: 25,000 nautical miles

Accommodations: 38 cabins for 60 people

Amenities for crew: Workout room, sauna, swimming pool

Fuel: The ship's fuel-carrying capacity is enough to sail halfway around the world.

Sources: Federation of American Scientists; Offshore Heavy Transport; U.S. Navy;

Researched by JULIE SHEER / Los Angeles Times

MATT MOODY, LORENA IIGUEZ and VICTOR KOTOWITZ / Los Angeles Times

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