SINGAPORE: A collision between a Singapore-registered container vessel and a Gibraltar-registered container vessel off Pasir Gudang Port, Johor Malaysia on Tuesday (Jan 3) has resulted in about 300 tonnes of oil spilled in the surrounding waters, said the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA).
In a press release on Wednesday, MPA said it was notified of the collision between Singapore-registered container vessel Wan Hai 301 and Gibraltar-registered container vessel APL Denver by the Johor Port Authority (JPA) at about 11.50pm on Tuesday.
There have been no reports of injury and traffic in the East Johor Straits and Singapore’s port operations remain unaffected, the Singapore authority said.
According to MPA, APL Denver's ship master reported that one of the ship's bunker tanks had sustained damage resulting in about 300 tonnes of oil spillage.
JPA has deployed four anti-pollution craft and an oil boom around APL Denver to contain the oil spill.
In Singapore, two oil patches were spotted along the western coastlines of Pulau Ubin (near the OBS jetty) and Nenas Channel, MPA said, adding that it has activated nine anti-pollution craft with dispersant-spraying capabilities to clean up the spilled oil.
Two skimmers and booms have been placed off the OBS Jetty and Nenas Channel to contain the oil patches, it added.
Since the time of the collision, MPA has been working closely with NParks and AVA to "manage the incident", it said. As the tide is expected to move eastwards on Wednesday evening, oil absorbent booms to protect the mangroves and mudflats along the northeastern coasts of Pulau Ubin - including Chek Jawa wetlands - have also been set up, said NParks.
"In addition, booms have also been set up to protect the mangroves at Coney Island Park and Pasir Ris Park," added an NParks spokesperson.
Oil containment booms and buoys deployed at Serangoon Reservoir. (Photo: Vanessa Lim)
Responding to queries from Channel NewsAsia, PUB said oil patches were not detected in the seawaters near the coastal reservoirs, such as the Punggol, Serangoon and Lower Seletar Reservoirs. “Raw water in the reservoirs is not affected,” it said.
As a precautionary measure, PUB said oil absorbent and oil containment booms have been deployed in the sea near the tidal gates of these reservoirs to block off any possible oil residue.
MPA said that, as a flag state - a state under whose laws a commercial vessel is registered - it will investigate the cause of the collision. Both APL Denver and Wan Hai 301 are currently berthed at Pasir Gudang Port and are in "stable condition", the Singapore authority added.
THREE COASTAL FISH FARMS AFFECTED
According to the AVA, three coastal fish farms in the Eastern Johor Straits have been affected by the oil spill. Dead fish was found at one of the farms, which reported a loss of about 100 to 200kg worth of fish.
Oil absorbent pads and canvas have been issued to 11 farmers closest to the oil spill site to help protect their fish stock, AVA added. Farmers have also been advised to stop feeding their fish and to deploy canvas skirting to prevent oil from contaminating fish stocks.
“AVA will continue to monitor the situation and assist the affected fish farmers,” said a spokesperson. “As a precautionary measure, AVA also collected fish samples from coastal fish farms in the Eastern Johor Straits for food safety tests.”
Additional reporting by Vanessa Lim.