Alongside 2GO Group’s ongoing search and rescue operations, the company is also addressing and containing the oil spill coming from the sunken m/v St. Thomas Aquinas by flying in global oil spill experts to professionally handle the situation in the Lawis Ledge in Talisay, Cebu as part of the company’s commitment to the environment.
On Aug. 17, the day after the ship sank, 2GO Group deployed two Malayan towage tugboats at the site to contain an anticipated oil spill. One of the tugboats is properly equipped with machineries, materials and supplies against oil spills such as the 400 meter oil spill boom, including oil skimmer; solvent boom pads to absorb oils from the water surface; 4 bales of booms and pads and drums of chemical dispersants. In short, 2GO is taking all steps to contain any possible oil spills from the ship’s sinking.
The company is also flying in four Japanese technical divers to augment its own complement and local divers from the Philippine Navy and the Coast Guard. A Japanese salvage master is being flown in to help expertly contain the spill. This Japanese salvage master has helped in massive global oil spills. In addition, an expert from the International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation Limited (ITOPF) will also be flying in to Cebu to help assess the situation.
2GO is taking this pro-active stance to ensure that the St. Thomas Aquinas’ sinking will not aggravate in any way the marine ecosystem of Talisay and other water bodies in Cebu.
The ferry had 20,000 liters of diesel fuel and 120,000 liters of bunker or crude fuel in the ship’s fuel tank and 20,000 liters of lube oil that were being used by the engines when it was running.
M/V St. Thomas Aquinas carried mostly agricultural products from Mindanao since the vessel came from Surigao and Nasipit port. There were no cargos marked as “Dangerous Goods.”
(This is a press release sent by the company to The Filipino Scribe.)