Emergency responders in Trinidad and Tobago are hastily working to address a significant oil spill caused by an unidentified ship that became stuck near the Caribbean islands. This incident has put a damper on Carnival tourism.
On Sunday, Prime Minister Keith Rowley stated that the spill was not under control and that the country is facing a national emergency.
The unidentified ship overturned on Wednesday without sending out any distress signals and without any crew members or clear ownership.
On Sunday, Rowley announced a state of emergency due to an oil spill affecting approximately 10 miles of coastline from a vessel.
The government has released images and video showcasing crews working throughout the night on Sunday.
The leak has caused harm to a coral reef and beaches along the Atlantic coast, resulting in a recommendation for residents of Lambeau village to wear masks or find temporary housing elsewhere.
The government shared satellite images on social media displaying the impacted regions.
“The post states that from the satellite images, it is evident that there is a unique, silver-like sheen coming from the capsized and damaged ship. Furthermore, there are visible lines of a dense, dark substance present along with the leak.”
During the peak of Carnival celebrations, a spill poses a threat to the tourism industry, which plays a crucial role in the economy of this two-island nation.
It is currently uncertain how greatly tourism will be impacted. On Sunday, a cruise liner with 3,000 passengers arrived at Tobago.
Rowley stated that the unknown ship may have participated in illegal activities. Additionally, he mentioned that the ownership and origin of the vessel are unknown, and its contents are also a mystery.
According to Rowley, divers noticed the word “Gulfstream” on the side of the vehicle and have also discovered a section of cable, potentially suggesting that it was being pulled at the time.
The Emergency Management Agency of the island reported that there were no indications of life on the 330-foot long vessel. The agency has shared numerous images and videos on social media depicting efforts by the ship and its crew to contain and clean up the oil spill.