Captain and officer held over Great Barrier Reef accident
Thursday 15 April 2010
Australian police arrested the captain and senior officer of a Chinese ship yesterday and charged them with damaging the Great Barrier Reef, more than a week after their coal carrier ran aground and tore a two-mile gash in the protected area.
The Shen Neng 1 veered out of a shipping lane and slammed into the reef on 3 April, possibly smearing the coral with toxic paint that could prevent marine life from growing back. Even in the best-case scenario, experts said the damage could take 20 years to heal. Coral shredded the ship's hull, causing it to leak two to three tonnes of fuel oil.
Most of the oil was dispersed by a chemical spray and did little or no damage to the reef itself, but officials said they believe some of it has begun to wash up on the beaches of a wildlife sanctuary.
The Great Barrier Reef is a World Heritage Site because of its gleaming waters and environmental value as home to thousands of marine species. The accident was in the reef's southern tip, which is not the main tourism hub.
Australian police said the ship's captain and the chief officer on watch during the accident would appear in court today. The police said officers executed a search warrant on the ship yesterday. The ship's owners said last week that they were cooperating with the investigation.
- 1 Man on naked bike ride gets ejected after becoming aroused
- 3 Ann Summers survey reveals the UK's favourite sex position
- 4 Jaden Smith wears gender fluid dress to high school prom with Hunger Games actress
- 5 How much sex should I be having?
Ed Miliband returns to the backbenches but it's all a bit awkward as he tries to avoid eye-contact with fellow Labour MPs
Man on naked bike ride gets ejected after becoming aroused
Charles Kennedy 1959-2015: A gifted, compassionate politician whose career was cut short by the 'demon drink' - latest news
Ayyan Ali: Pakistan's top model now appears in the courtroom rather than on the catwalk
Isis tortures 14-year-old Syrian boy and films it in graphic video for 'propaganda purposes'
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Why this year's general election was the most unfair in Britain's history
£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Trainee Case Handler is requi...
£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Conveyancing Case Hand...
£12675 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Office Assistant is required...
£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Trainee Case Handler/Probate ...