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Business Observer Friday, Sep. 6, 2019 8 months ago

Salvage firm acquires new vessel for long-range operations

Treasure & Shipwreck Recovery Inc., based in St. Petersburg, will use the ship to investigate sites in Florida, South Carolina and the Caribbean.

ST. PETERSBURG — Treasure & Shipwreck Recovery Inc., formerly known as Beliss Corp., has acquired a new research vessel, the Bellows, which will allow it to target sites off the coast of Florida and South Carolina and in the Caribbean.

According to a press release, the 71-foot, 94-ton Bellows, with a range of 1,500 miles, represents a significant advancement for the company’s efforts to search for and recover artifacts and treasure throughout U.S. and Caribbean waters. The vessel will be operated by a contractor, Sea Research Society, under the guidance of Treasure & Shipwreck Recovery COO Lee Spence.

Treasure & Shipwreck Recovery, the release states, acquired the Bellows from the state of Florida. The ship was used extensively over several decades by the Florida Oceanographic Institute for university projects. It’s estimated that more than 3,500 undergraduate and graduate students utilized the Bellows, which can carry a crew of 14, for research.

Spence, in the release, says he intends to put the vessel into service immediately, setting sail for a large cluster of unexplored shipwrecks off of Cape Romain, S.C.

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