Six days after the accident off Gibraltar, pumping out the dangerous heavy oil remains the salvage team's greatest concern. The government of the British Overseas Territory at the southern tip of Spain announced that the difficult pumping of fuel continued into the night on Sunday.
The situation on board the grounded freighter "OS 35" is "stable". Recently, only a little oil has flowed into the sea. The red flag was only raised on Little Bay beach on Sunday because of "very light pollution".
The 128 meter long "OS 35" collided with a liquid gas tanker on Monday evening for an unknown reason and was then grounded in shallow water off a beach on the east side of Gibraltar due to water ingress.
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The work of the emergency services suffered a setback on Saturday when the freighter's engine room filled with water. The on-board systems are no longer available for pumping, and emptying the tanks will take longer than planned, it said. A period was not mentioned.
Some beaches on the rock of the monkey, as Gibraltar is also known, and in neighboring Spain had been polluted by fuel in the past few days, and shimmering streaks of oil could be seen on the sea. The authorities imposed various bathing and fishing bans, some of which were lifted over the weekend. Helpers cleaned coastal zones and polluted seabirds.
The authorities were particularly concerned about emptying the front tank with 126 tons of heavy fuel oil because the bow is under water. There is also a risk that the ship, whose hull has already warped, could break in two because of the changing load distribution during pumping. 250 tons of diesel on board were pumped out on Friday except for a remainder of five tons for the operation of the ship's systems. In addition, there were 27 tons of lubricants on board.