The Captain of the Port provided an update to the Gibraltar Contingency Council, jointly chaired by the Chief Minister Fabian Picardo and the Governor Vice Admiral Sir David Steel, at 6pm at No 6 Convent Place. Also in attendance were the Deputy Chief Minister Joseph Garcia, Minister for the Port Vijay Daryanani and Minister for Environment John Cortes.
EXTRACTION OF FUEL FROM TANK 2
By 7pm this evening, 80 tonnes of low sulphur fuel oil had been pumped out of the port and starboard of tank 2. The remainder, approximately 16 tonnes, is expected to be successfully extracted tonight.
The emptying of tank 2 represents the removal of more than a third of the low sulphur fuel oil from OS 35.
PREPARATIONS TO EMPTY TANK 1
Preparations will begin in earnest at first light to empty tank 1, which has a total of capacity of 126 tonnes of low sulphur fuel oil.
As the preparations for the operation to remove the fuel from tank 1 continue, the GPA aims to take advantage of this period to set out new boom arrangements around the ship in diamond formation in order to better contain any oil that may seep as a result.
The process of placing this boom is highly complex, involving numerous assets, and may take 12 hours or more.
CLEANUP OPERATIONS ON THE EASTSIDE
2 J formations continue to work on the eastside to tackle remaining oil sheen patches that have started to move in a north easterly direction due to the bi-directional currents in the area.
This is a clear demonstration of the challenges faced in the clean up operation and the importance of concentrating the GPA’s priorities on the extraction of oil from the vessel.
A deflection boom has already been deployed north of Catalan Bay.
POSITIVE COMMUNICATION WITH SPAIN
The Chief Minister this evening has appreciated positive and supportive conversations with the President of the Junta de Andalucia, Snr Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla, the President of the Cadiz Deputacion and Mayor of San Roque Juan Carlos Ruiz Boix, and the Mayor of La Linea, Juan Franco regarding Gibraltar’s clean up efforts thus far.