Two cargo ships collided at the Kamarajar Port at Ennore, Chennai in the wee hours of Saturday, resulting in an oil spill that washed ashore turtles and theatened the livelihood of fishermen.
Early on Saturday, two cargo ships collided at the Kamarajar Port at Ennore, Chennai. MT Maple was leaving the port after offloading an LPG consignment. MT Dawn Kanchipuram (pictured here) was entering with a full load of petrol and lubricants.
The collision proved disastrous, as oil from the cargo ships spilled into the sea. “The mishap resulted in a sheen around the vessel. Sheen is a thin layer of oil floating on the water that is caused by shipping operations. It looks like clean white oil. We have deployed oil containment boom,” an official from Kamarajar Port said.
Several dead turtles and hatchlings coated with the black oil were washed ashore and discovered among the boulders.
By Saturday afternoon, the spread of oil was seen on a 400-metre long stretch, 40 metres wide, near the Ernavur junction.
On Monday morning, beach walkers found oil on the sands on the Marina beach, near INS Adyar, at Nochikuppam and at Pattinapakkam.
The floating oil along the shore of north Chennai came as a shock to the fishing villages, since the Port authorities had said on Saturday that there was only a thin sheen from the ships and it would disappear soon.