02 July 2013

Oil spill off East Coast Park, 2 Jul 2013

100 metric tonnes of fuel oil was spilled when two foreign bulk carriers collided at sea about 6.6km south-west of Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal, according to an MPA media release.
A very rough estimated position of
the collision based on info provided so far.
A total of 10 patrol and anti-pollution craft have been deployed to clean up the spilled oil. Work is currently continuing and MPA is co-ordinating the clean up with other government agencies and the ship owners.

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore's (MPA) patrol craft MPA III (left) is seen spraying dispersant at the incident site with Oriental Pioneer (background right) on Tuesday, July 2, 2013. Two foreign bulk carriers collided at sea about 6.6km south-west of Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal on Tuesday, causing a fuel oil spill of 100 metric tonnes from a bulk carrier. -- PHOTO: MARITIME AND PORT AUTHORITY OF SINGAPORE from Rachel Tan Straits Times 2 Jul 13;

Major oil spills in Singapore history from Today Online 2 Jul 13;

Video AIS replay of the collision between the 2 bulkers Atlantic Hero and Oriental Pioneer

Full media articles consolidated in this wildsingapore news post.

If the my estimation of the location of the collision is right, today's spill is near Bedok Jetty where just last week, we saw wonderful reefy marine life as well as lush seagrass meadows teeming with interesting creatures. Last week, at Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal we also saw reefs, seagrass meadows and even otters!

At 7pm, MPA issued an update on the situation:
Good progress has been made in containing and cleaning up the oil spill resulting from the collision between the South Korean-registered bulk carrier, Oriental Pioneer, and the Bahamas-registered bulk carrier, Atlantic Hero.

There has been no further spillage of fuel oil from Oriental Pioneer. As a precautionary measure, an oil boom and an oil spill response craft have been deployed around the vessel. Bio-degradable oil dispersants were used to break up the oil slick in the waters. As of 1700hrs, no significant patches of oil were sighted in the waters.

In total, 11 craft and some 100 personnel from MPA and oil spill response companies have been deployed as part of the containment and clean up efforts. A helicopter was also deployed to conduct aerial surveillance of the affected waters.

Members of the public can contact MPA's 24-hour Marine Safety Control Centre at 6325-2488/9 to report any sighting of oil slick in our waters or coastlines.

In May 2010, a collision 13km south-east of Changi East resulted in a spill of 2,000 tonnes of crude oil that eventually landed on East Coast Park, regenerated reefs and seagrasses on Tanah Merah and well as Chek Jawa on Pulau Ubin and shores in Johor. Here's more about the response to the May 2010 oil spill.

Today's spill is not of crude oil but of fuel oil. The quantity spilled is also smaller. Let's hope the impact of the spill will be minimised.

Other recent oil spills include


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