What Is a Ship Graveyard? Definition, Meaning and Concept
A ship graveyard is a place where ships rust and disintegrate. There are several reasons why a ship graveyard might be instituted. Whether from a scrapping and dismantling process, a common wreck area where multiple ships have perished, or a wartime battlefield where multiple ships have sunk, a ship graveyard is commonly home to multiple ships in a certain proximity. each. Many of these places are home to underwater tourists, dive explorers, and researchers trying to document historic ship sinking.
Contrary to modern ecology laws, early ships were dismantled by scrap yards and the empty hulls were simply towed out to sea and sunk in an attempt to dispose of them. This created large ship graveyard sites where various ships of varying types and sizes were sunk and allowed to rust. Modern law forbids such behavior and ships are no longer allowed to sit on the ocean floor without wasting anything. Ships are dismantled in dry dock and cut up entirely for scrap and disposed of instead of creating new ship graveyard sites on the ocean floor.
In the case of a wartime ship graveyard, the area is often declared off limits to divers, as unexploded ordnance is considered a dangerous threat. Occasionally, an unmanned submarine may investigate these ship graveyard sites to monitor the rate of decomposition and document the condition of the wreckage below the water's surface. In some cases, military dive teams will enter the wreckage to inspect the remaining ammunition and cargo inside the ships. In some cases, explosives can be planted inside the cargo holds of these ships and detonated to release the explosive power of decaying munitions.
In some areas of the world, dangerous waters and rocky shores are littered with the rotting hulls of ships that have perished due to natural disasters and storm activity. Shipwrecks dating back hundreds of years line the dangerous coastline and ocean floor, warning any ships entering the area to exercise caution. It is important to note that not all ships found in a graveyard are shipwrecked. In some cases, such as decommissioned warships, ships are stripped of many major components and put into storage. Ships found in this type of ship graveyard are subject to recommissioning should the ships ever be needed again to provide security for their country and enter into a naval conflict.