Today's Paper Archive Classifieds Subscriptions RSS Feeds Site Map ePaper Mobile Apps Social
SEARCH

News » International

Updated: April 12, 2010 20:26 IST

Ship that leaked oil on Great Barrier Reef removed

AP
Share  ·   print   ·  
In this file photo, a ribbon of oil snakes away on the surface from the Chinese-registered bulk coal carrier Shen Neng 1, off the coast of Rockhampton, Australia. AP.
In this file photo, a ribbon of oil snakes away on the surface from the Chinese-registered bulk coal carrier Shen Neng 1, off the coast of Rockhampton, Australia. AP.

A coal carrier that ran aground and leaked about 3 tons of oil on the Great Barrier Reef was refloated on Monday after being stuck for more than a week.

The 755—foot (230—meter) Shen Neng 1 was successfully lifted off the coral reef after crews spent three days pumping heavy fuel oil from the stricken vessel to lighten it.

Salvage crews planned to tow the vessel to an anchorage area near Great Keppel Island, 38 nautical miles (44 miles, 70 kilometers) away.

Authorities were hoping to move the ship before storms forecast for Tuesday hit.

The Shen Neng 1 slammed into a shoal on April 3, and coral shredded part of its hull, causing a leak of about 3 tons of oil. That oil was dispersed by chemical sprays and is believed to have caused little or no damage to the reef.

The Australian Federal Police, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority were investigating alleged breaches of the law in the accident.

The grounding forced a review of shipping regulations in the fragile area. Queensland state Premier Anna Bligh vowed on Monday to sharply increase penalties on ships causing oil spills.

Mr. Bligh said the maximum penalty for corporations would increase from 1.75 million Australian dollars ($1.64 million) to AU$10 million, and individuals would face fines of AU$500,000 - up from AU$350,000.

“This increase in penalties will send a message to the thousands of ship crews who pass through Queensland waters that nothing but the greatest attention to safety and care will be tolerated,” Mr. Bligh said. The legislation will be introduced in the state parliament this week.

The proposed new penalties are the latest sign that authorities are serious about stepping up protection of the fragile reef.

On Monday, three crewmen from another boat that allegedly entered restricted reef waters on April 4 appeared in Townsville Magistrates Court on charges of entering a prohibited zone of the reef without permission.

The South Korean master and two Vietnamese officers of the Panama-flagged coal boat MV Mimosa were granted bail and ordered to reappear on Friday. They face maximum fines of 220,000 Australian dollars ($205,000).

Keywords: Leaky sgip

More In: International | News
Musharraf Indictment
Is the Army losing its pivotal role in Pakistan politics?
Yes
No
Can't say


O
P
E
N

close

Recent Article in International

South Asian LGBT group links ‘third gender’ ruling to 377 issue

Following the Indian Supreme Court’s ruling on Tuesday to create a ‘third gender’ for transgendered individuals rather than forcing them... »