South African authorities have launched an investigation to establish the cause of an oil spill that occurred during bunkering off the port of Ngqura near Port Elizabeth.
The incident occurred during a fuel transfer operation to the Liberia-flagged MV Chrysanthi S.
The Department of Environmental, Forestry and Fisheries released a statement saying that it had been “notified of an oil spill that took place in Algoa Bay in the early hours of Saturday. The incident took place at approximately 4:40 (in the) morning during offshore bunkering operations in Anchorage 1 of the Port of Ngqura.”
Between 200 and 400 litters of fuel were released into the ocean, the South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) said.
The bunkering services company involved, SA Marine Fuels, dispatched a commercial oil spill response service provider to mitigate and contain the spread of the spill.
“This incident is currently considered a Tier 1 level incident which does not require intervention from the national authorities as local resources are sufficient. The department will provide assistance if the incident escalates and requires it.”
The department further said weather conditions in the Algoa Bay area on Saturday were hindering operations.
“However, the situation has been reported to be managed and under control. The oil is not expected to reach the coast and currently moving in an offshore direction.”