Aerial images recorded by the Brazilian Navy yesterday show a series of dark spots around the Stellar Banner, a fully laden very large ore carrier that ran aground on Monday night 100 km from Vale’s Ponta da Madeira Maritime Terminal in the state of Maranhao.
Brazilian authorities said there are two damaged areas in the hull of the four-year-old Polaris Shipping ship that had just set off for China when it ran into trouble.
In an update yesterday, Vale said it had contacted energy giant Petrobras to send oil spill recovery vessels to the site of the accident. The Brazilian miner is also sourcing equipment to try and contain any bunker spill. Salvage experts have been deployed and are planning to remove the many tonnes of bunker fuel as a priority.
Crisis communications personnel retained by Polaris have yet to reply to questions sent by Splash earlier today.
According to local reports in Brazil, the ship’s captain manoeuvred the vessel to run aground on a sand bank after it started taking on water. A spokesperson for Polaris Shipping told Splash yesterday that the giant bulker, which was carrying some 275,000 tons of iron ore, made contact with an unidentified shallow sea bed after departing Ponta Da Madeira with some ballast water tanks and void space suffering damage.