Press Release

Related to the press release under the title ‘Fire onboard MT New Diamond completely doused’ issued on 07th September 2020 at 1800 hrs

Ships, aircraft and tugs belong to the Sri Lanka Navy, Sri Lanka Air Force, Indian Coast Guard, Indian Navy and other stakeholders are continuing their damage control operations to suppress the fire resulted by adverse weather, onboard the MT New Diamond again. As a result of the incessant effort of the mission partners, the flames have been reduced to a certain extent as of now.

Meanwhile, 06 salvage operation experts as well as 11 damage control professionals directed to the island by the company that acts as the commercial and technical operator of MT New Diamond, have arrived at the sea area where the distressed ship is located to support damage control operations. Accordingly, the Sri Lanka Navy and other damage control teams, following the expert advice, are active in close coordination to contain the blaze that developed again.

Incidentally, 09 ships, 05 tugs and aircraft belong to the Navy and other damage control mission-partners are making their all-out contribution in this damage control operation which is taking place about 30 nautical miles off Sangamankanda Point. Further, 02 ships of Sri Lanka Coast Guard and 03 Fast Attack Craft belong to Sri Lanka Navy are engaged in the mission throughout, for logistics support. Meanwhile, another Dornier aircraft of the Indian Coast Guard is expected to arrive in China Bay, Trincomalee from Chennai today with a consignment of Dry Chemical Powder.

There is no risk of the fire spreading to the oil storage or leaking oil from the ship into the sea as of now. However, today a research team from the National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA), Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA) and University of Ruhuna is scheduled to visit the site to inspect water samples, to find out if there is any damage to the marine environment due to this disaster which occurred on 03rd September.

Accordingly, the Sri Lanka Navy, rest of the mission partners and the team of experts continue to engage in this damage control operation, until the fire is completely controlled.