Oil Spill in port

Floris Steenkamp

A tanker ship sprung an oil leak alongside in the port of Walvis Bay over the weekend, triggering an oil clean up response. The tanker ship Ursu is believed to have started leaking oil after a bearing seal on one of the vessel’s propeller shaft failed.

Two front page pictures as well as the picture above show the vessel alongside with a technical team on a semi-rigid inflatable boat trying to assess the damage. The oil can be seen as a brown slick floating on the water. Inflated oil booms (also visible in the slick) that floats on the water were deployed to prevent the spillage from expanding. A process was then started to pour a biodegradable material on the oil which dissolved and neutralised the oil.
At the time of going to press Namport was yet to make a public announcement on the status of the oil spill incident.
Oil flow to the affected propeller shaft was dis-continued and they vessel was towed out into the bay off the port of Walvis Bay where a decision would be made whether the vessel would proceed to its next destination, albeit with limited propulsion, and whether repairs would be conducted locally. The vessel owners will have to foot the bill for the oil spill clean-up, it was said yesterday.

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