South Africa-Environment-Oil spill

S/African agency probes oil spill off Port Elizabeth

APA-Port Elizabeth (South Africa)

South Africa’s maritime safety agency has launched a probe into an oil spill that dumped up to 400 litres of oil into the Indian Ocean at the weekend, APA learnt here on Monday.

The South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) said in a statement that the investigation would seek to establish the circumstances under which the oil spilled into the ocean during the refuelling of a vessel off Port Elizabeth on July 6.

Between 200 and 400 litres spilled in the Port of Ngqura 20km north east of Port Elizabeth.

“SAMSA will conduct a comprehensive investigation into this unfortunate incident. While responsibility for preventing pollution by ships at sea no longer resides with SAMSA but with the Department of Environmental Affairs, we take our role as the custodian of the country’s maritime affairs and for promoting South Africa’s maritime economy extremely seriously,” SAMSA acting chief executive Sobantu Tilayi said.

He however said SAMSA and other agencies had conducted a check of the beaches and islands off Port Elizabeth on Monday and confirmed that the oil would not reach land.

JN/APA

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