August 05, 2006

The Scrapping of the France (or Norway or Blue Lady)

The SS France (later the Norway, and now in her last days the Blue Lady) was one of the most popular cruise ships of the second half of the twentieth century (and the first few years of this century). It was one of the last great liners to be built like a ship (as opposed to a giant land-based hotel or casino), and was the longest passenger ship in the world for over 40 years (until the gigantic Queen Mary II). It has sailed its last cruise though. She was never fully repaired following a boiler explosion in 2003. And for the last two years there has been much discussion of what to do with her, as the 500 tons of asbestos on board was thought by many to make her too dangerous to scrap (similar complaints forced the old French aircraft carrier Clemenceau back to France after Indian authorities said scrapping her woul violate environmental laws). However Indian authorties have now ruled that the shipbreakers can have at her, so she will be beached, broken apart, and an old (and popular) era in cruises will finally come to and end.

Posted by armand at August 5, 2006 08:40 AM | TrackBack | Posted to Architecture

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