Poudre d’or, 7th of September 2020
At 6:45 pm, today, Dive Solutions (Mauritius) and Polyeco S.A. with the help of the Indian Navy have successfully laid a specially-designed anchoring frame, consisting of four concrete anchors (manufactured locally by Gamma Materials) in order to safely deploy an oil boom formation. This will constrain any oil leakage from the Sir Gaetan tug which holds 25 cubic metres of diesel oil and 2 cubic metres of lubrication oil.
Dive Solutions (Mauritius) and Polyeco S.A. have already mobilized the necessary personnel on site for diving, pumping, and anti-pollution works that will need to take place in the following days. MT Elise, a bunkering barge of Taylor Smith, is currently equipped with all the necessary anti-pollution and pumping equipment from Polyeco S.A. and is already on standby at the site in Poudre d’or. Operations are expected to take 7-10 workings days, if favorable weather conditions permit. All the operations will be conducted during daylight and only in case of adverse weather conditions will be suspended for safety reasons.
As from tomorrow, inflatable oil booms will be deployed around the Sir Gaetan tug to contain any possible oil leakages. Following this, the oil tanks on the Sir Gaetan tug will be checked for the presence of oil and an explosion proof Hot Tap drilling system will be used to empty the tanks. Hot tap systems allow the safe openings and placements of valves into oil containing tanks. The Hot Tap method has been previously proven efficient in pumping operations from wrecks.
Athanasios Polychronopoulos, Executive Chairman of Polyeco S.A says:
“We are supporting Mauritius at no charge, because as Greeks we were faced with a similar situation with the MT Agia Zoni oil disaster in 2017. We were able to safely cleanup the spillage and therefore we are confident with our expertise and experience to help authorities to immediately manage this operation. Equipment from Greece has already been brought to Mauritius on Sunday (6th of September) to help with the operations. We believe that we will pump the oil the soonest possible subject to weather conditions.”
Wietsman Roets, the lead supervisor from the Dive Solutions (Mauritius) team will cut into the hull where the fuel cells are located to install the valves that will help in pumping the oil. The latter is an expert in such operations and has been part of the diving team for the salvage of Costa Concordia in 2012.
David Huggett, Operations Manager at Dive Solutions (Mauritius)
“We have extensive international experience in salvage works through our mother company, Aquatech Diving Services (ATDS). We worked on difficult cases and are hopeful that we can complete this operation successfully.”
Bussunth Kumar Rughooputh, Manager of Port Environment of the MPA, has been instrumental in mobilizing all the teams to fulfill the logistic support.