The grounding of a 100ft boat at Gloucester Island could be an environmental disaster, MP Jason Costigan has warned.
The grounding of a 100ft boat at Gloucester Island could be an environmental disaster, MP Jason Costigan has warned. Jason Costigan

Hazardous material removed from shipwreck

HAZARDOUS materials, such as diesel and oil, were removed from a ship prior to its grounding on an island in the Whitsunday National Park.

According to a Maritime Safety Queensland spokesperson, marine officers boarded the vessel and removed the "majority pollution hazards".

"They immediately responded to the latest pollution report, inspecting the vessel (Thursday) and confirming no pollutants were escaping.

 

Member for Whitsunday Jason Costigan inspects the area where a boat has run aground
Member for Whitsunday Jason Costigan inspects the area where a boat has run aground Jason Cosigan

Some materials such as hydraulic oil and diesel remain on board in secure holding tanks and pose a low risk. The vessel is in a stable condition."

However, Whitsunday MP Jason Costigan has visited the site and recorded footage of a black substance leaking from a crack in the ship's hull.

He said it was an "environmental disaster" for the pristine Whitsunday area, and called on all the departments involved to do their utmost to have it removed.

 

Tateyama Maru has run aground at Gloucester Island.
Tateyama Maru has run aground at Gloucester Island. Contributed

The department said its priority now was not to remove the hazardous material from the secured tanks.

"Our current concern is to discourage curious onlookers from approaching the vessel," the department spokesperson said. 

"We are working with other agencies including Parks and Wildlife and Queensland Police to ensure public safety.   

"We will continue to closely monitor the 34m ex-fisheries and training vessel while arrangements are made for its salvage.

"The owner is always responsible for vessel salvage and we are discussing options with him."



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