PROFEPA: Oil Still Leaking from Grounded Los Llanitos Bulker

Small traces of hydrocarbons were found in the water surrounding the grounded bulk carrier Los Llanitos in Punta Graham, Mexico’s environmental protection agency (PROFEPA) said.

The oil sheen was detected during a monitoring tour to the site on Tuesday.

Namely, having boarded the wreck, inspectors found remnants of fuel left in the ship’s tanks that had been ordered to be removed, together with the hazardous waste.

What is more, the ship’s hull has sustained severe structural damage and is at risk of breaking up due to the intense movements of waves.

PROFEPA urged the Port Captaincy of Manzanillo to order the company responsible for the vessel to take appropriate preventive measures, and install absorption and containment booms to avoid that the remains of hydrocarbons that could still be found inside the ship’s structure wash into the water.

The 71,665 dwt bulk carrier ran aground near Mexico’s Barra de Navidad on October 23, 2015 during Hurricane Patricia.

At the time of the incident the vessel, which was on its way from Manzanillo, was carrying twenty seven crew members, who were safely airlifted by Mexican navy’s helicopter.

At the beginning of November of 2015, two weeks after the vessel ran aground, the authorities launched technical activities aimed at removal of hazardous waste and transfer of around 425,000 liters of fuel and about 11,484 liters of oil from the Mexican-flagged bulk carrier, which were concluded at the end of November.

Several plans of dismantling the ill-fated ship were considered by the Mexican government, including dismantling it at the site. Nevertheless, the ship remains stranded.

World Maritime News Staff

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