Ger­man of­fi­cials work to tow fuel freighter

Ves­sel was grounded by storm that claimed at least six lives and stalled pub­lic trans­port

Gulf News - - Europe / United Kingdom - Glory Am­s­ter­dam,

Shal­low wa­ters near a North Sea is­land were com­pli­cat­ing ef­forts to dis­lodge a big freighter that ran aground on Sun­day, Ger­man of­fi­cials said yes­ter­day, as the coun­try be­gan clean­ing up af­ter a storm that killed at least six peo­ple in Ger­many, the Czech Repub­lic and Poland.

Rail­way op­er­a­tor Deutsche Bahn con­tin­ued to deal with “sig­nif­i­cant dam­age” from downed trees on some rail routes.

Ser­vice would be lim­ited in parts of north­ern Ger­many, it said, af­ter be­ing sus­pended in large parts of north­ern and cen­tral Ger­many on Sun­day, strand­ing thou­sands of trav­ellers.

In the North Sea, au­thor­i­ties were mon­i­tor­ing the

a 225-me­tre freighter that ran aground about 2.2 kilo­me­tres from the Ger­man is­land of Lan­geoog, for any signs of oil leaks, said Michael Friedrich, spokesman for Ger­many’s Cen­tral Com­mand for Mar­itime Emer­gen­cies.

But plans to tow the freighter free dur­ing high tide were be­ing re­vised af­ter of­fi­cials de­ter­mined the wa­ters were too shal­low for the ship that would have done the tow­ing, Friedrich said. Plan­ning was now un­der way to lighten the ship’s load and to use ships with shal­lower draft for tow­ing, he said.

“We’re work­ing on a plan, but the tow­ing will def­i­nitely not hap­pen to­day,” he said.

All is well, says cap­tain

The freighter’s cap­tain had re­ported all was well on board and the ship’s crew of 22 was safe, he said.

The freighter was not car­ry­ing any cargo, Friedrich said.

Con­cern about an oil leak cen­tred on 1,800 tonnes of heavy oil and 140 tonnes of ma­rine diesel the ship had on board for fuel.

Else­where in Ger­many, Deutsche Bahn said rail traf­fic on a num­ber of key routes would re­sume in the af­ter­noon.

Reuters

Fed­eral Agency for Tech­ni­cal Re­lief work­ers dis­man­tle scaf­fold­ing over­turned by storm Her­wart, in Ber­lin, on Sun­day.

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