An oil leak was on Sunday reported from the Panama-flagged cargo vessel MV Rak which sank off the city coast earlier this week due to ingress of water in the cargo hull, officials said.
"Since last night, oil has been observed leaking from the sunken vessel Rak Carrier at an approximate rate of 1.5 to 2 tonnes per hour. The oil has spread about 7 nautical miles around the vessel," a defence press release said. A coastguard ship, Samudra Prahari, which was on patrol, responded and used oil dispersant to neutralise the spill.
"Operations 'Paryavaran Suraksha - 2/2011 has been launched by coast guard. Another vessel ICGS Sankalp has also been pressed for augmenting the oil spill response," the release added. While coastal authorities have been advised to maintain strict vigil and prepare for contingency, the state authorities have been advised to direct fishermen to refrain from fishing in the vicinity of the affected area.
M V Rak which was on its way from Indonesia's Tutung to Dahej in Gujarat with 60,000 tonnes of coal, had a 30-member crew of Indonesian, Jordanian and Romanian nationalities, who were rescued by the Indian Navy and coast guard personnel before it sank on August 4.