Ship collision off Chinese port spilled at least 400 tons of crude

Beijing, Apr 29 (EFE).- At least 400 tons of oil were spilled into the Yellow Sea when a cargo ship collided with an oil tanker earlier this week in front of the important eastern Chinese port of Qingdao, officials said Thursday.

Sources from the Maritime Security Administration of Shandong province (in which Qingdao is located) told EFE that “according to preliminary statistics, 400 tons of oil leaked (into the sea)” from the crashed Liberian-flag tanker A Symphony following the Tuesday incident.

The spill has caused a stain 3 kilometers long and 600 kilometers wide, according to state newspaper Global Times, adding that the damaged tank contained 10,061 tons of crude, of which about 2,000 have been transferred to other vessels.

According to the source from the Shandong Maritime Safety Administration, “there are now more than 10 cleanup boats in the area” to try to control the spill.

The accident, — which occurred at about 09.00 local time (01.00 GMT time) when the Panamanian-flagged bulk carrier Sea Justice collided with the A Symphony, anchored in waters near Qingdao — “has had no effect on (the operation from) Qingdao port,” the source said.

He added that crew members were still on board the damaged ships.

The A Symphony tanker, 272 meters long and almost 46 meters wide, was built in 2001 and is managed by Singaporean company Goodwood Ship Management.

In a statement sent to EFE on Tuesday, this company confirmed the event.

“The force of the impact on the front of the port side caused a crack in the cargo and ballast tanks, with a quantity of oil spilled into the ocean,” the statement read.

According to Goodwood Ship Management, poor visibility off Qingdao Port has hampered ongoing emergency operations. EFE


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