Oil contained as cleanup continues
Monday, 4 May 2015 11:00 a.m.
Most of the oil spilled in Tauranga Harbour from the Port of Tauranga last week has now been contained, with 21 tonnes of oiled debris collected.
Bay of Plenty Regional Council Regional On-Scene Commander Peter Buell said he believed about 95 percent of the oil had now been contained and collected. The focus would now be on more detailed work, such as cleaning oil caught between rocks at Bridge Marina and daily rechecking of shorelines.
“More sorbent booms have been deployed at the Port and a large amount of oiled seagrass has been removed. At the Bridge Marina cleaning of the rock wall continues, and sorbent booms and spill pads have been deployed, checked and replaced as needed,” he said.
“The oil is contained at the Marina with sorbent booms, but there are a number of oiled boats which will need to be cleaned over the next few days. Most of the oil from the water surface has now been captured. There’s still work to be done, and this will be time consuming.”
Conditions and tides are expected to be favourable today for finishing cleaning up residual oil clumps at Bridge Marina, Pilot Bay and Sandy Bay. The Mount beach and Shelley Bay are now almost clear, and work has finished at the worst affected areas of Maungatapu and Motuopuhi Island.
Work is continuing at Matakana Island, working with local iwi.
No more oiled wildlife has been found, although there have been reports of lightly oiled birds around the harbour. They will be left to clean themselves as the amount of oil is unlikely to harm them.
- Any oiled wildlife found should be reported to DOC 0800 362 468 (0800 DOC HOT).
- Boaties are reminded not to clean their boats or gear with any aggressive chemicals as this may cause more contamination. Please contact your marina operator for advice. The Regional Council has provided pads, disposal bags and skips and protective gloves at the marina to help boaties keep their berths clean. Mobil has set up two 0800 numbers: for boat owners wanting advice – 0800 895 011. For boat owners wanting to make insurance claims to Mobil – 0800 692 524.
- People should stay away from oil wash-up areas. Oil slicks or oiled vessels should be reported to the Regional Council’s Pollution Hotline, phone 0800 884 883, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- More photos are available at www.boprc.govt.nz/taurangaoilspill