Re-ignited fire controlled, stricken oil tanker being towed further away

(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) – Disaster management teams have successfully brought the fire reignited aboard MT New Diamond oil tanker by the adverse weather, under control by this morning, and there are no flames or smoke to be noticed now, the Sri Lanka Navy said in its latest update.

Having controlled the fire, the tanker, which caught fire first on 3rd September, is now being towed further away towards safe waters by a tug and is now about 37 nautical miles off Sangamankanda Point in Eastern Seas of Sri Lanka, the Navy said.

Disaster management operation is however still continuing at full steam in rough sea conditions and strong winds.

A narrow diesel oil patch extending to one kilometer away from the ship has been observed last evening and a Dornier aircraft of the Indian Coast Guard has air dropped diesel dispersant to minimize the potential impact on the marine environment.

Under the directives of Sri Lanka Navy Commander, Vice Admiral Nishantha Ulugetenne another specially trained Firefighting and Disaster Management team from the Sri Lanka Navy is scheduled to set off to the site today (09th September 2020), the Navy said.

The team is expected to board the ship to review its present standing and gather specifics to decide future course of action, once the disaster situation on the ship is completely under control.

The MT New Diamond crude oil tanker was transporting 270,000 metric tons of crude oil from the port of Meena Al Ahmadi in Kuwait to the Port of Paradip in India when a fire broke out aboard in the eastern seas of Sri Lanka on 03rd September 2020 at around 0800 hrs. The ship was sailing 38 nautical miles off Sangamankanda Point when it caught fire with an explosion in a boiler in the ship’s main engine room.


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