Phoenix: down to sea bed, never to rise again

2011-09-06 00:00

THE MT Phoenix oil tanker was towed to her final resting place, about two kilometres below the surface of the Indian Ocean and some 78 km south-east of Durban, at around 6 pm yesterday.

The South African Maritime Safety Authority (Samsa) communications officer, Mambrie May, said the equipment on the tanker was removed before the lengthy job of scuppering the vessel began.

Two tugboats, Smit Amandla and Smit Siyanda, finally managed to tow the MT Phoenix from the shore at Salt Rock after a cold front on Friday created high swells that delayed the operation.

Sobantu Tilayi, the executive head at Samsa’s Centre for Shipping Services, said, “The removal of the MT Phoenix was crucial to ensure the safety of our environment and the protection of a new tourist destination on the KZN North Coast, Sheffield Beach near Salt Rock.”

The salvagers received many offers to buy the vessel, but scuppering it in the deep was the cheapest option in an operation that cost more than R34 million since the tanker ran ashore on June 26.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.