The Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) chartered oil tanker 'New Diamond', laden with about 3,00,000 tonnes of Kuwaiti crude that caught fire onboard, reignited again as the government worked to assess the damage caused to Sri Lanka and explore the possibility of filing a claim with the ship’s insurer.

Sri Lankan authorities commenced an inspection on Tuesday (08) to determine if there is any damage to the marine environment due to this disaster which occurred on the 03rd of September.

General Manager of the Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA) Dr. Terney Pradeep Kumara said a 07 member team of experts arrived at the area where the distressed ship is located.

02 experts each from the National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA), Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA), and the Department of Oceanography and Marine Geology of the University of Ruhuna are part of the team of experts.

Following a complete inspection, the team is to prepare a report which will be presented to the Attorney General to be used in taking legal action and claiming insurance for damages caused.

Dr. Terney Pradeep Kumara speaking to News 1st said the report will be prepared in a period of three days.

Sri Lanka Navy said Disaster Management Teams were able to douse the fire on board the MT New Diamond Crude Oil Tanker by 03:00 PM on Sunday (06) and have been working in full swing to continue disaster management operations to prevent a recurrence of fire using fire smothering agents like water and chemicals.

A spokesperson for the Sri Lanka Navy Captain Indika De Silva said the vessels and craft dispatched for disaster management efforts continue to engage in boundary cooling on the fire engulfed oil tanker as well in efforts to douse the fire.

He revealed that the fire-stricken ship is now lying 28 nautical miles (56 km) off Sangamankanda Point.

He said the reignited flames were controlled to a certain extent and the operation to douse the fire is underway and 09 ships and 05 tugs are actively involved in the operation.


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