Massive oil spill prevention effort launched after shipwreck

By Dac Thanh   March 26, 2024 | 06:28 am PT
Massive oil spill prevention effort launched after shipwreck
The Giang Anh 18 vessel is split in half following impacts with reefs on the seas of Quang Nam in central Vietnam. Photo courtesy of the Vietnam Environment Response Center
Seven thousand liters of oil will be removed from a shipwrecked vessel in central Vietnam after a cargo ship crashed into a reef, endangering the ocean with a possible spill.

The prevention effort began Wednesday after the accident in the Cu Lao Cham Marine Conservation area off the coast of Quang Nam Province on March 24.

Ho Quang Buu, deputy chairman of Quang Nam Province, said on Tuesday that he had instructed provincial border guard forces to cooperate with other authorities to rescue the Giang Anh 18 vessel from the environmentally-protected waters.

By Tuesday morning, the ship had been split in half and was on the brink of sinking. However, 7,000 liters of oil on the ship has so far remained locked in its containers, so fortunately spillage has not yet occurred.

The ship’s owner had hired the Vietnam Environmental Incident Response Center to extract 7,000 liters of oil from the vessel.

Hoang Cong Hoa, head representative of the response center in central Vietnam, said the oil extraction would begin Wednesday. If the ship remains in its current state, the oil would be removed within a day, he said. But if it sinks, the extraction might take 2-5 days.

Authorities use buoys to prevent an oil spill in the seas off coastal Quang Nam Province. Video courtesy of the Vietnam Environmental Response Center

The Giang Anh 18 vessel was carrying nine crew members, 2,960 tons of cement and 7,000 liters of oil from Hai Phong to the Chu Lai Port of Quang Nam on March 24 when it hit the reef at the Cu Lao Cham sea region.

Border guard forces have rescued all crew members and brought them to safety.

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