The cleanup operation of an oil spill stemming from a sunken boat near Dunedin is reaching its final stages. Over 3,300 liters of oily water have been successfully removed since the incident involving an 18-meter, 60-tonne vessel took place at its wharf berth at Careys Bay in Port Chalmers.
Deputy Harbourmaster Pete Dryden of the Otago Regional Council stated that two mechanical skimmers had been working diligently to manage the spill since its occurrence.
The extent of the cleanup is subject to tidal conditions, and Dryden expressed hope that the operation would conclude soon.
Fortunately, there have been no reports of environmental damage or threats to wildlife due to the spill. However, the area will continue to be monitored for potential impacts over the coming days.
This incident marks the first time the council has been involved in cleaning up this type of spill, despite prior experience with skimmers, which were made available through Maritime New Zealand’s Pollution Response unit.
The collected oily water is being stored onshore for treatment and proper disposal. Salvaging the sunken vessel is the responsibility of the boat owner, with the council overseeing the process.