Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Grounded Rena off coast of New Zealand

On the 5th of October, a large (236m) cargo ship called the Rena ran aground on the Astrolabe reef, near the township of Tauranga. Tauranga is located on the "northern" coast of the North Island of New Zealand. The captain and the second officer of the vessel have now both been charged under New Zealand maritime transportation legislation for operating a vessel in a manner causing unnecessary danger or risk.

From what I can ascertain there is certainly some level of oil pollution into the ocean and surrounding shore area and some impacts on the local wildlife, particularly marine bird life. Also as a result of the accident, approximately 70 containers from the ship have fallen into the water and from the photos of the ship at this moment, there is likely to be a lot more in the near future. Some of these containers apparently carry chemicals and potential pollutants.

Maritime New Zealand has ongoing updates about the progress of the "clean-up", the salvage and the consequences for those involved on their website.

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