An India bound vessel from Kuwait with a crude shipment that caught fire off the Sri Lankan coast has been towed to safe waters while fire fighting continues and there has been no oil slick, defence authorities said here on Saturday.
Owing to intense and continuous fire-fighting, "the fire has been localised at Port Bridge Deck and Aft Ready Use tank area," a defence release said providing updates on ongoing efforts to put off the blaze.
"Indian Coast Guard and Sri Lankan ships and aircraft along with tug ALP Winger successfully towed MT New Diamond more than 35 NM (Nautical Mile) away from SriLanka coast to safe waters.
No oil spill has so far been reported," therelease said.
Another tug 'TTK-1' joined ICG ships, tugs Ravana and Vasabha for continuing with fire-fighting operations, it said.
ICG Fast Patrol Vessel Ameya with 1000 litres Oil Spill Dispersants has been deployed to augment pollution response efforts.
Another fast patrol vessel Abheek with 40 drums (200 kg each)of Aqueous Film-Forming Foam Concentrates (AFFF), 10 units of Dry Chemical Powder (DCP-50 Kg each) and 20 barrels (50 kg each) of DCP has also arrived at the spot and owing to intense efforts fire has been localised.
Emergency towing vessels from Mumbai and Chennai have also been pressed into service to augment salvage and fire fighting efforts.
Motor Tanker (MT) New Diamond is a Greek owned vessel and under charter by Indian Oil Corporation.
The tanker carrying crude from Kuwait to India burst into flames off the eastern coast of Sri Lanka on Thursday, leaving one of its 24 crew members missing and another injured while explosions and a crack was noticed on September 4.
The Panama registered tanker was carrying 2,70,000 tonnes of crude oil from Kuwait to India when its engine room caught fire off the coast of Sangamankanda in the eastern district of Ampara in the island nation.
Indian and Sri Lankan authorities are liaisoning continuously to put off the fire expeditiously and they have deployed various assets for the purpose.
An Indian Coast Guard Dornier aircraft (with Oil Spill Dispersants and Pollution Response Spray pods)was sent from here on Friday for aerial assessment and to tackle oil spill, if any.
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