Latest News & Events from the Rock

Parts of Gibraltar’s western coastline suffered oil pollution yesterday morning following an incident during Saturday night’s heavy weather at the refinery in Algeciras involving a British merchant vessel, ROPAX ONE, and the refinery mono-buoy.

The incident was confirmed by Algeciras Port by telephone to the Gibraltar Port Authority (GPA) at mid-day yesterday. It is understood that the release of oil was due to damage to the mono-buoy or associated pipeline.

As soon as the oil was detected, the GPA mobilised its resources primarily to deal with the oil in the Ocean Village Marina, one of the worst affected areas, and to remove the small quantities of oil from the beaches. It would appear that the majority of oil has been driven by the wind into Ocean Village. Sea and weather conditions at the time prevented the deployment of booms and limited the response options.

Yesterday morning, officials from the GPA inspected Western Beach, Little Bay, Camp Bay and Rosia Bay. There was a small quantity of oil along the tide line of Western Beach. There was also a small quantity of oil on the beach at Camp Bay. At Little Bay there was a small quantity of oil on the beach and adjacent to the water intakes. Oil could be seen in the breaking waves and there was an area of sheen off shore. At Rosia Bay there was a small oil slick (approx 3 metres diameter) and oily sheen.

The oil was subsequently removed from Western Beach and Camp Bay. It has not been possible to make any progress at Little Bay due to prevailing conditions. (…)


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