Grounded Malaysian Container Ship Is Pulled Free

Tuesday, November 14, 2000
A Malaysian container ship grounded on Australia's Great Barrier Reef for 12 days with dangerous chemicals aboard was pulled free on Tuesday, state officials said.

Four tug boats were used in the operation after two earlier attempts to free the 600 ft. (184-m) Bunga Teratai Satu from the World Heritage-listed reef had failed. Winches on board the ship and connected to anchors on the sea floor were also used.

It was reported that there were no immediate signs of pollution. The 21,000-dwt ship would be pulled to deeper water for a hull inspection. Salvage workers used dynamite to blow up part of the reef in a failed bid to free the ship on Sunday.

The vessel ran aground on November 2 on Sudbury Reef approximately 30 miles east of Cairns in Australia's tropical north.

Owned by Malaysia International Shipping Corp., the vessel's cargo includes 132 tons of fungicides and pesticides, glycerol, perfumery products and polystyrene beads.

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