Preparations are progressing to commence the removal of fuel and lubricating oil from the containership Kea Trader, almost two weeks after its grounding on Durand Reef, in the Pacific Ocean.
Oil spill prevention measures and equipment are now on site.
The condition of Kea Trader is being assessed on an on-going basis – by teams on board, by divers and remotely via modelling produced by specialist naval architects.
“Whilst the full extent of damage is still unknown, and will only likely become clearer after she is re-floated, the vessel remains in a stable position on a flat rock reef as confirmed by initial underwater inspections,” the ship’s owner, Lomar Shipping stated in an update today.
Salvage firm Ardent is leading the salvage operation.
A spokesman said: “We have amassed a large team of specialist resources to support this salvage operation. This has taken time, given the distance involved to get adequate resources in place to safely re-float the vessel and protect the local marine environment. We continue to receive tremendous support from the authorities in New Caledonia and are moving forward with this salvage operation with every day that passes.”
Kea Trader, a 2,194 teu container ship, was launched in January this year. It had been sailing from Papeete, in French Polynesia, to Nourmea, the capital of New Caledonia, loaded with 750 containers when it hit the reef.