Mauritius says almost all oil removed from damaged Japanese ship

World

A volunteer cleans oil spilled from the bulk carrier ship MV Wakashio, belonging to a Japanese company but Panamanian-flagged, that ran aground on a reef, at the Mahebourg Waterfront in Riviere des Creoles, Mauritius, August 12, 2020. REUTERS/Stephane Antoine NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

MAHEBOURG, Mauritius (Reuters) — Mauritius Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth said on Wednesday that almost all the oil had now been removed from a damaged Japanese ship, which has leaked an estimated 1,000 tons of oil off the Mauritius coast.

All fuel had been removed from tanks, but there was some residue in parts of the ship, his office added.

The MV Wakashio, owned by Nagashiki Shipping and operated by Mitsui OSK Lines Ltd, struck a reef and went aground off the Indian Ocean island’s southeast coast on July 25. It began leaking oil August 6.

Volunteers on Mahebourg waterfront sped up efforts to prepare for a larger toxic oil spill on Wednesday as they feared the damaged ship that has been polluting the waters could break apart.

The south east coast where the oil spill happened is famous for snorkelling, kite surfing and people visiting the sea flora and the fauna of Mauritius, as well as sailing, as boats tend to travel to the islands nearby.

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