SA Agulhas now available to help out with Cape Africa casualty

May 6, 2004
Author: Carol Moses, DEAT

The Department of Environmental Affairs and Tourism's supply vessel the SA Agulhas has arrived in Cape Town today and preparations are underway to get her sailing off to join the Cape Africa casualty as soon as possible. The SA Agulhas will be used as a base for salvage personnel, equipment storage, helicopter landings, a medical facility and as a temporary storage for the fuel pumped from the Cape

The Department has further mobilised an additional vessel with oil combating capabilities from the South African navy, the Umalusi to assist the anti-pollution patrol vessel, the Kuswag IV in the event of an oil spill. The Umalusi is fully equipped with combating apparatus.

The Department's environmental protection measures remain in place.

The Russian tug, the Nikolay Chiker has departed for the Cape Africa casualty earlier today and a ship-to-ship oil transfer operation is expected to commence tomorrow, weather permitting.

On Monday, 26 April 2004 the 150 000 ton Taiwanese registered cargo ship, issued a distress call following the discovery of a large hole in its hull. It is still unclear how the ship was damaged.

The Cape Africa remains afloat at 150 miles West of Cape Town with the Smit Amandla and the Kuswag IV still on the scene.

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