Association de citoyens qui défendent l'environnement maritime




Landerneau 23rd December 2016

Sinking of two supply ship-type hulls off the Brittany coast, belonging to the Danish ship owner MAERSK. France must know more about these sinkings! The sea is not a dustbin, nor a scrapyard for old ship?!!

The facts: 22nd December 2016 at 01h55, Regional Rescue and Surveillance Operational Center (CROSS) at Etel received a VHF call from the supply ship MAERSK BATTLER, reporting an incident at sea while towing two supply-ship type hulls of the coast of Brittany.

The MAERSK BATTLER'S master reported that he was towing two supply-ship hulls, the convoy was heading to Turkey. The two hulls were being towed moored alongside each other, one the MAERSK SEARCHER the other MAERSK SHIPPER were to be scrapped in Turkey. The MAERSK BATTLER'S master reported a leak in one of the towed hulls and that it sank at an estimated position: 4804.6N-00624.4W, 60 nautical miles to the west of Sein island.

Some hours later, the MAERSK BATTLER'S master, reported the sinking of the second hull MAERSK SHIPPER at an estimated poition; 4800.9N-00637.0W, 70 nautical miles west of Sein island, that there were no victimes and no risk of pollution, the MAERSK BATTLER'S master continued his route to Turkey.. Why was the MAERSK BATTLER not diveted to Brest, do the authorities know the state of this supply-ship tug, which is also destined for the scrapyard ?

Why are the French authorities too cautious towards major world ship-owners, who have the capacity to scrap their ships closer to home, and tow them under complete safety.

For the MOR GLAZ Association, there are always a risks when old hulls are towed especially when moored alongside each other, and when the hulls are to doomed to be scrapped, there are major risks.

The MOR GLAZ association requests that the ship-owner of the three hulls, accept all it's responsabilities. There should be no leniency when there is risk of polluting the sea, because it will be, at this place, sooner or later. 24 hours after, there is a danger of pollution at 60 and 70 nautical miles of the coast of Brittany

For the MOR GLAZ Association Jean-Paul HELLEQUIN President