Beach oil bot­tle find sparks in­ves­ti­ga­tion

Augusta Margaret River Times - - News -

Capes beach clean­ers Tan­garoa Blue are claim­ing a small win af­ter an in­ves­ti­ga­tion tracked in­dus­trial oil bot­tles found on lo­cal beaches to a freighter docked in South Aus­tralia.

Dur­ing Oc­to­ber’s WA Beach Clean-Up, two bunker oil bot­tles were dis­cov­ered by vol­un­teers on the Leeuwin-Nat­u­ral­iste Na­tional Park beach.

Ac­cord­ing to Tan­garoa Blue manag­ing di­rec­tor Heidi Taylor, the in­tact bot­tles were full of marine fuel oil with la­bels list­ing a ves­sel name, date and crew mem­bers’ names.

The dis­cov­ery trig­gered an Aus­tralian Mar­itime Safety Author­ity in­ves­ti­ga­tion, which tracked Panama bulk car­rier Glo­ria Is­land to Theve­nard in SA.

“This high­lights the value of cit­i­zen sci­en­tists’ ob­ser­va­tions while out in the field,” Ms Taylor said.

“Our vol­un­teers are not rub­bish col­lec­tors, but part of a na­tional marine de­bris CSI team.”

The AMSA re­view in­cluded in­ter­view­ing Glo­ria Is­land crew and of­fi­cers, with no re­ports of un­to­ward be­hav­iour and in­suf­fi­cient ev­i­dence to de­tain the ves­sel. An im­prove­ment no­tice was is­sued un­der the 2012 Nav­i­ga­tion Act di­rect­ing im­prove­ments in some safety man­age­ment pro­cesses.

AMSA stan­dards gen­eral man­ager Brad Groves said the close work­ing re­la­tion­ship with Tan­garoa Blue al­lowed the agency to act quickly when vol­un­teers ten­dered ev­i­dence of pol­lu­tion.

Re­ports can be made to AMSA’s Joint Res­cue Co­or­di­na­tion Cen­tre in Can­berra on 1800 641 792 or via amsa.gov.au/envi ron­ment/re­port­ing-ship-sourc ed-pol­lu­tion.

One of the marine oil bot­tles re­cov­ered from Capes beaches.

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