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HomeMaritimeSunken Dive Vessel Spills Diesel into Galapagos' Academy Bay

Sunken Dive Vessel Spills Diesel into Galapagos’ Academy Bay

This past Saturday, in Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands’ Academy Bay, The recreational diving boat Albatros sunk into the bay. Thankfully, no passengers were aboard, and all four crew members were rescued unharmed. However, fears of environmental damage spiraled over the 2,000 gallons of diesel remaining on the sinking ship.

In some regions of the bay, the sinking left a faint sheen on the water. Ecuador’s environment ministry reported that their first responders took immediate action to contain the spill. The first responder’s efforts were successful and have prevented what the Galapagos National Park described as a “significant impact on the island and marine ecosystems of the archipelago.” 

The last major spills in the Galapogos occurred in 2019 when a barge went down off San Cristobal with about 600 gallons of diesel on board. However, the most damaging recent spill in Ecuador occurred in 2001, the tanker Jessica released about 150,000 gallons of diesel. The sinking of Jessica resulted in significant damage to the coastal environment on several islands in the archipelago.

According to the authorities, this weekend’s incident is said to have been caused by a ruptured pipe inside the vessel. Although first responders could get most of the diesel out, The boat still has gasoline on board, which will have to be removed during a recovery effort. Tourism in the area was closed for the day Saturday but quickly resumed work the following day.



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