Sri Lanka prepared for the possibility of an oil spill on Thursday after a chemical-laden cargo ship sank off its west coast.
|The ship began to sink early Wednesday and a salvage crew attempted to tow the ship away from shore,Singapore-registered MV X-Press Pearl Ship|
The Singapore-registered MV X-Press Pearl transported 1,486 containers, including 25 tons of nitric acid as well as other chemicals and cosmetics, was docked in front of the port city of Negombo when a fire broke out on May 20 following an explosion on board.
Burning containers full of chemicals fell from the ship’s deck into the sea as rescue workers tried to contain the fire for the next two weeks.
The ship began to sink early Wednesday and a salvage crew attempted to tow the ship away from shore into deeper water, but the attempt was abandoned after the ship’s stern hit the seabed. , said in a statement Thursday that there is still no evidence of fuel spilling from the ship and that much of the toxic cargo had been burned in the fire.
“The rescuers stay in place to take care of any debris support,” the statement said. But photos from the country’s coast guard showed a green sheet covering the sea around the ship and millions of plastic.
The pellets have already littered the beaches and surrounding fishing grounds, forcing the government to ban fishing along a 50-mile stretch of coast. The government has announced that it will remedy the incident. “We hope to receive compensation in accordance with local and international laws.
We will never give up these efforts,” said Minister for Ports and Port Development, Rohitha Abeygunewardene, at a press conference on Wednesday evening.“We will calculate the cost from the start of this incident and ask for compensation. Singapore authorities announced Thursday that they have opened their own investigations into the incident.