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News ID: 47849
Publish Date: 15:27 - 09 September 2020
Wednesday, 09 September 2020_The Sri Lankan navy said on Wednesday it had extinguished another fire on a stricken supertanker loaded with 2 million barrels of oil and is towing it to deeper water.

Sri Lanka tows stricken oil tanker out to sea, douses fireThe navy's disaster management team put out the fire that reignited on Monday on the MT New Diamond, and there were currently no fires burning on the ship, which is 76 kilometers off Sri Lanka's east coast.

Officials were working to assess any damage to the environment from the incident, which began on Sept. 3 when a fire broke out in the engine room.

On Tuesday, the navy spotted an oil slick a kilometer from the supertanker, chartered by Indian Oil Corp to import about 2 million barrels of oil from Kuwait.The spill appeared to come from the engine room.

"We are certain the leak is not from the crude oil storage tanks. We are readying a team of divers to detect the exact spot of the leak," navy spokesman Indika de Silva said. Three members of a salvage team had boarded the tanker, he added.

Sri Lanka will take legal action against the owner of the oil supertanker that caught fire on Thursday as there is a large leakage of bunker oil from the stricken vessel, an official at the Marine Environment Protection Authority said.

"We are deciding whether to claim criminal liability or civil liability or both," Jagath Gunesekara, deputy general manager of the authority, said. He said action will be filed under Sri Lankan laws protecting the marine ecosystem.

Greece-based Porto Emporios Shipping Inc is the registered owner of the 20-year old Panama-flagged, very large crude carrier New Diamond, according to Refinitiv data. New Shipping Ltd is the manager of the vessel. There was no immediate comment from either company.

Source: Reuters

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