Freighter spills 100 tonnes of oil off Taiwan
A freighter that ran aground off the north coast of Taiwan has spilled more than 100 tonnes of heavy oil that is threatening wildlife in the region, officials said yesterday.
The spill from the 14,663-tonne "Morning Sun," a Panama-registered cargo vessel, washed up on a three-kilometre stretch of coast, the Environmental Protection Administration said.
"We've set up an emergency group to handle the accident," believed to be the worst marine pollution incident in the area in 10 years, Chen Hsien-hung, chief of the agency's Water Quality Protection Bureau, told AFP.
Two hundred people were to be put to work cleaning up the coast, Chen said, adding that oil booms had been used to prevent the spill from spreading.
A nearby nuclear power plant, which relies on sea water to cool its reactors, was put on alert.
The 18 crew were rescued after the ship ran aground on Monday, Chen said.