Oil spill closes Cape beaches

2012-09-02 17:48

Cape Town - Clean up operations will resume on the Table View beachfront on Monday, when it is hoped most of the oil from a stranded bulk carrier would be washed out to sea, the City of Cape Town said on Sunday.

A second aerial assessment was done on Sunday morning, after a helicopter flew over the area on Saturday to determine the extent of the oil spill.

"The assessment indicated a black streak of oil around the vessel in the area approximately 500m radius moving towards the beach. There is also oil on Dolphin Beach [1km stretch] and at Rietvlei [500m]," the city's disaster management spokesperson Wilfred Solomons-Johannes said.

Urgent measures were taken to keep people away from the wreckage, which broke into three parts following rough seas on Friday night.

The city's law enforcement officers as well as the SAPS closed off public access to the beaches.

"The [members of the] public that were paddling and performing other recreational activities around the vessel have been instructed to move out of the area by officers on marine enforcement watercraft," said Solomons-Johannes.

Efforts would also be made to address environmental concerns.

The Panamanian-registered and Turkish-operated ship was carrying 30 000 tons of coal and 600 tons of heavy fuel when it developed engine problems in September 2009.

The vessel has remained stranded since then.

South African authorities require R40m to clear the wreckage.

  • pws69 - 2012-09-02 18:25

    Why was the oil not pumped out in 2009 already?

      JohanCduToit - 2012-09-03 10:05

      The oil was removed in 2009. It was the first thing they did. I believe the oil leaking out now is just trace amounts left at the bottom of the tanks and other hard to reach places.

  • robqb - 2012-09-02 18:28

    That wreck has been laying there for around three years and NOBODY thought of removing something as damaging as the oil left on board? Is the cost of removing the oil greater than the cost of the damage done by the oil to the coastline? Somebody needs to take responsibility instead of passing the buck. Somebody needs a kick up the arse!

      Jimmy NZ - 2012-09-02 18:52

      I love the way they say they hope most of it washes out to sea... Like that doesn't cause any damage !!! Humans, what a useless bunch we are !!!

      tony.kirby1 - 2012-09-02 20:53

      Rob they did think about the oil on board, but as usual only thought about and nothing about it, because a committee had to be form to decide who would sit on the committee. That first committee would the decide who should head a committee and commission it to start requesting people of high corruptable esteem to apply for the job of serving on the committee. The committee is still working on its terms of reference and applying for a budget of several million to pay for travel and entertainment expenses of the first committee to start its work after the mid year break. Work is expected to start in January 2014.

  • Ekkie Ries - 2012-09-02 19:05

    idiots really, if i knew there was so much oil on board i would have pumped it out myself, what the hell, they could have gotten a contract crew to pump that oil out for mahala

  • chris.lang.581 - 2012-09-02 21:15

    Don't complicate things! these 'officials' are only there to collect a pay packet. Responsibility and performance is not part of the deal!

      charlie.charles.5872 - 2012-09-02 21:44

      Couldnt of said it better, THEY GIVE A CRAP about the environment neither do they have the slightest knowledge to what damage it causes but otherwise what im typing here is not going to change a thing, maybe if i could transform into a big machine that could grab the ship & throw it into the face of the person that is responsible for cleaning it up.

  • tony.vanniekerk.35 - 2012-09-02 22:03

    Heads must roll at City Disaster Management. Always waiting and saying "We are monitoring the situation and will act when there is an emergency". We should not rest until they have taken responsibility. They had the same response recently when asked about the stricken bulk carrier that was lying in False Bay. NOT GOOD ENOUGH!

  • bruce.owendavies - 2012-09-03 12:44

    what i dont understand is the vast amnount of officails that it took to close that section of the beach for the day,i live acroos the road and counted 15 officials cars parked there all day,not manning the beach but standing around chatting to one another and stuffing there faces with takeaways,but what i found really amusing was that as soon as the sun started to set,there was a mass exodius ,so what now, we are allowed on the beach at night,because believe me there was not one officail in site

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