Oil spill threatens Mauritius: tanker streaked on reef loses oil, stabilization fails. Thousands of volunteers working for vacation paradise.
- On July 25th, a tanker hit a reef off Mauritius - oil has been leaking since this week.
- The tanker has already lost 1,000 liters - 3,000 more liters are still on board.
- Volunteers off the coast are trying to mitigate the impending disaster - Japan and France are sending aid.
Mauritius - Large parts of the turquoise-blue sea are already colored brown-black - the picturesque coasts of the holiday paradise Mauritius are threatened by an environmental catastrophe of enormous proportions.
On July 25, a tanker with around 4,000 tons of fuel on board hit a reef - but oil has only been leaking since last week. Due to the bad weather and rough seas, experts fear that the hull of the tanker could continue to be damaged and lose even more of its cargo. Around 1000 tons have already leaked.
Oil spill threatens Mauritius: Thousands of volunteers help on the beaches
Thousands of volunteers from the local population tried to avert the worst for their island on Sunday:
The south coast of Mauritius Blue Bay is in poor condition, the locals are working hand in hand and doing their best to help. pic.twitter.com/Wmog85qykJ- Mauritius Island (@MauritiusGuide) August 9, 2020
With the help of floating barriers, they try to prevent the oil slick from spreading further. But it is a race against time: the first lagoons with otherwise brilliant white sand are already covered with oil. Many of the helpers were also covered from head to toe with a film of oil after their work. Previously, Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth had declared an environmental emergency. Not only the beaches are threatened, but also coral reefs on the coast, which are among the most beautiful in the world. So far, all attempts to get the oil off the board by helicopter have failed due to the bad weather * .
Oil disaster off Mauritius: Japan and France send aid - crew are no longer allowed to enter the ship
The tanker comes from Japan, it was under the Panamanian flag. The 20-person crew was able to be brought to safety, but has not been allowed to enter the tanker since then - for reasons of investigation, only the captain, accompanied by him, should fetch the log from the ship.
The freighter “Wakashio” off the east coast of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean.
© Georges De La Tremoille / MU press / AP / dpa
The ship operator Mitsui OSK Lines apologized for the accident and promised to "do everything possible to solve the case". Japan announced that it would send a team of experts on Monday . France had already sent experts and equipment from the neighboring island of La Réunion to Mauritius . (kat / AFP - * Merkur.de is part of the Germany-wide Ippen-Digital editorial network.)
List of rubric lists: © Jean Aurelio PRUDENCE / L'Express Maurice / AFP