Environmental warnings are issued from both sides of the Channel, as fuel-removal operation proceeds
Half the fuel aboard the grounded container ship MSCNapolihas now been pumped out, according to the MCA website . And the work continues today with a team of 30 salvors on board removing an estimated 30 tonnes of oil per hour.
In the mean time, the Solent Protection Society has issued a press release calling upon “…maritime safety agencies and operators of large container ships using the Solent to reassure the public that they are reviewing their operational safety standards in the light of the Branscombe Bay incident.” While acknowledging the fact that the conditions encountered by theNapoliwould be less likely to occur in the more sheltered Solent area, the Society points out that “we can get heavy winds which will affect the high substructure of ever larger container carriers when they are operating with the wind on their beam, at slow speeds, in our navigating channels. An engine breakdown in this event could prove disastrous. As the volumes and sizes of vessels steadily increase, extra vigilance is essential.”
Channel polluters take advantage ofNapoligrounding
There were further reports today of oil pollution affecting beaches in northern France, which has been linked to the grounding of theNapoli. According to /www.agencebretagnepresse.com/fetch.php?id=6006&title=Une%20nouvelle%20pollution%20marine%20affecte%20le%20littoral%20breton.>Agence Presse Bretagne there is a concerted effort underway to determine whether the oil is from theNapolior from another source. According to Pierrick Perrin, Mayor of Pleumeur-Boudou, a small town 30km east of Roscoff, shipping traffic in the Channel may be taking advantage of theNapoligrounding to empty their own tanks with impunity. Jacques Michelot, secrétaire général de la préfecture des Côtes-d’Armor commented that the oil found on the beach in Brittany is consistent with that affecting the Devon coastline.