Jun 18, 2021

Monsoon hampers removing X-Press Pearl

The X-Press Pearl shipthat sank off the Colombo port will not be removed until rough monsoonseasons is over.

According to the MarineEnvironment Pollution Authority, the entire ship has now sunk, but it saidwreck can't be immediately removed due to the rough sea.

MEPA Chairperson DarshiniLahandapura said the sea was now very violent and the ship's wreck would not beremoved during the monsoon season.The current South-Westernmonsoon usually occurs from May to September.  

However, the ship'soperator X-Press Pearl has appointed a caretaker company. 

"They will will lookafter the entire vessel, if there is any any oil spill, the pollution part ofit, the entire incident and the entire area will be looked after by the caretakercompany until the owner appoints a wreck removal company," saidLahandapura.She said "It’s notsafe to remove the wreck as well during the monsoon season. That’s why theyhave decided to appoint a caretaken company until the situation becomes muchsafer to remove the wreck."X-Press Feeders also said"due to the exposed nature of the anchorage to the prevailing SouthWesterly Monsoon, it is likely that the wreck removal can only start afterthe SW monsoon subsides""Caretaker serviceswill remain on site until then. They will continue to minimize pollution andmonitor the wreck's condition and report daily to experts ashore and Governmentagencies." the company said.