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Another oil spill has occurred in Algoa Bay involving a ship-to-ship transfer of bunker fuel

The Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds (SANCCOB) is on high state of readiness to receive oiled birds and other environmentalist bodies opposed to offshore bunkering in the bay are on similar alert.

Journalist May 27, 2022
Updated 2022/05/27 at 9:23 PM

The South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) said on Tuesday it has initiated all relevant oil spill response teams as per the National Oil Spill Contingency Plan to assist with the containment and cleanup operation.

The vessels involved in the ship-to-ship transfer of fuel oil are the locally-flagged bunkering tanker LEFKAS (IMO 9417531), and the crude oil tanker UMNENGA II (IMO: 9311610).

Umnenga has been in the Algoa Bay anchorage since April. Lefkas is stationed at Port Elizabeth as one of the bunkering vessels.

The oil spill occurred on Monday (23 May 2022) at around midday while a transfer of oil was taking place. According to SAMSA all the relevant pollution response units were quickly activated, and booms deployed to contain the oil around the vessels.

The two tankers were ordered to remain attached to help with the containment of oil.

SAMSA said that throughout Monday night the collection of oil that had spilled continued. On Tuesday it was not known how much oil had gone into the sea.

Members of the public are asked to report any oiled wildlife to SANParks.

A previous oil spill into Algoa Bay occurred on 17 November last year, involving the Croatian bulk carrier, SOLIN (IMO 9629483), which was receiving bunkers from the South African-flagged bunker tanker SEA EXPRESS (IMO 8952065).

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