MANILA, Philippines — A spillage of diesel fuel ensued after an oil tanker carrying 800,000 liters of oil half-submerged in Oriental Mindoro early Tuesday morning, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) said.
The oil spill was detected after the PCG deployed its ship BRP Melchora Aquino and an airbus helicopter for surveillance and assessment.
“We monitored spillage of diesel fuel, not industrial fuel oil (cargo),” the PCG said in a statement.
To control the spillage, the PCG is set to install an oil spill boom.
The PCG said MT Princess Empress departed from Bataan en route to Iloilo with its 20 crew members.
However, the vessel encountered engine trouble and rough sea condition, which caused it to sink in half.
“Initial investigation revealed that the distressed motor tanker encountered engine trouble due to overheating. It then drifted towards the vicinity waters off Balingawan Point due to rough sea conditions until it became half-submerged,” the PCG said in a statement.
Port of Batangas manager Joselito Sino Cruz told DZBB that the vessel sank at around 2 a.m. Sino Cruz also previously said the incident occurred off the waters of Tablas Island in Romblon.
Meanwhile, a foreign vessel rescued all the 20 crew members, who were later dropped off at the Port of Subic Bay, according to Sino Cruz.
2 cargo ships sink in Philippines, all 32 local, foreign crew members safe