Ships Suspected in Estonian Oil Spill

Thursday, February 09, 2006
An investigation committee headed by the Estonian Central Criminal Police now suspects 15 vessels of the oil spill off the Estonia coast that resulted in death of thousands and aquatic birds. The Liberian oil tanker Flawless, had notified authorities of problems already when approaching the Muuga seaport. The vessel had sustained a seven centimeters crack in its hull. The Estonian Maritime Administration inspected the ship after the announcement, and investigators have now cleared it from oil spill suspicions. The oil found in the sea is from a ship's fuel tanks, not oil carried by oil tankers as cargo. The oil landed on the Estonian shore possibly in the late evening January 31, even though the first observations were not reported until the the next day. Estonian Border Guard Detachment airplanes will increase the number of their weekly surveillance flights over the Gulf of Finland from one to three. Cleaning up the Estonian coast of oil has been terminated for the time being. (Source: www.hs.fi)

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