Sri Lanka Prepares For Worst Oil Spill As Weather Hits Ship Salvage
Faizan Hashmi 15 days ago Thu 03rd June 2021 | 06:10 PM
Colombo, June 3 (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 3rd Jun, 2021 ) :Sri Lanka was preparing Thursday for a possible major oil leak from the burnt-out cargo ship sinking off Colombo's main harbour, as worsening weather stalled salvage efforts.
The Marine Environment Protection Authority readied oil dispersants and skimmers in case of a leak from the MV X-Press Pearl, which had 350 tonnes of fuel oil on board when it caught fire two weeks ago.
The vessel, which burned for 13 days until Tuesday, has already caused the island's worst maritime environmental disaster, littering beaches with tonnes of tiny plastic pellets.
With the stern now on the sea bed and the bow slowly sinking, environmentalists fear an oil leak would cause even greater degradation to marine life.
Sri Lanka's Harbour Master Nirmal Silva said no oil had leaked in the past 36 hours.
Two-metre (six-feet) waves, rain and strong winds prevented salvage experts going on board to assess whether the ship could be refloated and moved further out to sea, he added.
Alternatively it could be broken apart in the relatively shallow water.