Ship carrying 400 tonnes of oil CRASHES off Gibraltar coast and starts to sink
An container ship carrying more than 400 tonnes of oil has crashed into another vessel leaving the Port of Gibraltar and is sinking with the fear that it will spill its load causing an environmental disaster
Image: Youtube/ GBC News)
A crashed oil tanker carrying over 400 tonnes of oil is in danger of fully sinking off the coast of Gibraltar and spilling all its load sparking an environmental disaster.
The Bulk Carrier 0S 35 is now partly submerged with tugs having been brought to the scene by rescue teams in order to try and stabilise it.
It was leaving port in Gibraltar when it crashed into another ship, the ADAM LNG, which was also moving away towards open sea on Monday night.
There was an initial worry over a threat to the life of the 24 crew members with the massive container ship starting to sink, but now they appear to be safe, although still on board.
The main fear now is of an oil spill as the ship was on its way to Vlissengen, in the Netherlands, with a vast amount of oil on board.
It was carrying 183 tonnes of heavy fuel oil, 250 tonnes of diesel and 27 tonnes of lube oil.
Currently the crew have not been evacuated reportedly at the request of the captain but there are vessels at the scene that could take them away if necessary, says a Gibraltar Government press statement.
The latest advice from the Gibraltar Port Authority is that there is no threat to the life of the crew members.
An emergency Gibraltar Contingency Council has been set up with the Governor, Chief Minister and Minister for the Port being kept informed about what is happening.
The press release from the Gibraltar Government reads: “The Port Authority is dealing with an incident involving a collision between two vessels in the Bay.
“The vessel OS 35 clipped the vessel ADAM LNG as the former was manoeuvring to exit the Bay.
“The Port Authority directed the vessel OS 35 to the Eastside in order to ensure it could be beached and in that way try to minimise as much as possible the risk of the vessel sinking and to secure the lives of the mariners on board.
“The vessel is presently beached off Catalan Bay.”
Currently the bow of the ship is resting on the seabed in 17 metres of water and listing by three degrees to the starboard side.
It is positioned approximately 200 metres from Catalan Bay where it was beached in the hope that it would limit the damage.
Due to the tide the situation is constantly changing.
The aim from the rescue team is that at first light a dive team will be deployed by the Gibraltar Port Authority to carry out an underwater inspection.
The Gibraltar Government statement added: “The GPA are continuously reviewing the situation with a multi-agency operation currently underway, in the knowledge that high tide will come at 0530hrs and may require further action.
“The Gibraltar Contingency Council has been convened and His Excellency the Governor, the Chief Minister and the Minister for the Port are being continuously briefed by the Caption of the Port at the Port Office on the latest situation regarding the collision at sea.
“The Chief Minister has contacted the Leader of the Opposition to brief him on the latest developments.
“A further update will be issued in the morning unless there are material developments to report.”