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21st September 2022, 18:15

Bunkering operations currently suspended in order to focus resources on OS35 residual oil clean-up effort

Work to clean up residual oil from the beached bulk carrier, the OS-35 continue with bunkering operations currently suspended in order to focus all resources on the cleanup effort.

Vessels deployed by Spanish authorities are now at the northern end of Eastern Beach and at Europa Point in order to prevent as far as it is possible to do so the movement of oil towards the Spanish eastside coastline and into the bay.

Assets will remain on site through the night with booms with sorbent pads deployed to mitigate the impact of oil that escapes overnight.

The Port Authority points out that while the boom that surrounds the vessel continues to effectively reduce the amount of free- floating oil that is able to escape, it will never be able to contain it all entirely.

It adds the Captain of the Port continues to enjoy a cooperative and fluid working relationship with Spanish counterparts, with whom efforts to contain the free-floating oil as far as possible are being closely coordinated.

The situation will be assessed and reviewed in the morning.

The Department of the Environment’s priority today has been the assessment and mobilisation of cleanup operations at Seven Sisters, which is heavily soiled with oil.

Teams from the Department of the Environment, the Port Authority and Oil Spill Response have been deployed to the area to explore all options to clean the area as quickly and as effectively as possible.

Due to the nature of the oil, attempts to skim have been unsuccessful and the area will remain the priority for cleanupoperations over the coming days.

Assessments conducted on Wednesday have revealed that with the exception of the Seven Sisters site, there is little impact of oil on the shoreline.

Eastern Beach has been affected, with cleanup teams deployed on Wednesday. Catalan Bay has had limited impact, with some loose tar balls that cleanup teams were able to collect manually.

There has been very limited impact to Sandy Bay and to Little Bay. The limited impact to Camp Bay has been cleaned through the course of the afternoon.

Cleanup teams have been deployed to Rosia Bay, with the beach closed off to the public while works were ongoing.