Coast guard seals oil leaking from 1985 shipwreck off Newfoundland
ST. JOHN’S, N.L. – The coast guard says it has sealed off cracks in a sunken ship that was leaking oil into Newfoundland’s Notre Dame Bay.
Neoprene gaskets and weighted bulk bags were used to plug cracks in the hull of the Manolis L.
The Liberian-flagged vessel sank near Change Islands in January 1985 with more than 500 tonnes of fuel oil and diesel onboard.
Oil has been slowly leaking in recent weeks from two cracks measuring 30 centimetres and 56 centimetres in length.
The coast guard says 24 hours after the cracks were plugged no oil sheen has been visible in the area.
A spokesman said last week that a light sheen on the water was estimated by Transport Canada observers as a leak of about nine litres.
Local fishermen were concerned about the impact the oil was having on fishing grounds near the group of islands off northeastern Newfoundland.
Noisemakers were used to keep seabirds from the site.
Now that the leak is contained, the coast guard will consider other options for a more permanent solution.
The coast guard says it will check at the end of June to ensure the seals are holding.
© 2013 The Canadian Press