The cruise vessel Pacific Explorer, operated by UK-based P&O Cruises, has spilled waste water in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, an Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) spokesperson confirmed.
After reviewing the report, AMSA detained the ship on its return to Australia in Sydney on September 8 to gather evidence of the reported discharge.
“Discharge of pollutants in the GBRMP is a serious offence under the Protection of the Sea (Prevention of Pollution from Ships) Act and AMSA required that Carnival provide an AUD 2.1 million undertaking, equal to the maximum fine available, before the vessel was released from detention,” AMSA spokesperson said, adding that the authority is currently investigating the incident.
P&O Cruises self-reported to AMSA that it was suspected there had been an unintentional discharge of a limited amount of pulped and sieved food waste while Pacific Explorer was off the coast of Queensland on August 26, a P&O Cruises Australia spokesperson informed.
“Any unintentional discharge of food waste would have been in the order of seven cubic metres. We are currently responding to a formal process initiated by AMSA in relation to this isolated matter. We are cooperating fully with AMSA in the administration of this process,” the cruise company added.
World Maritime News Staff