On 2nd November 2000, the container ship the Bunga Teratai Satu
(22,000 tonnes, 184 metres), transporting a full cargo of containers
and with 1,200 tonnes of fuel in its tanks, ran aground on Sudbury
coral reef (Great Barrier Reef) when approaching Cairns harbour.
On 13 November, after 13 days effort and three rescue attempts,
the vessel was refloated without losing any cargo or fuel.
However the ship's hull had seriously scraped against the coral reef, which damaged an area measuring 1,500m³, and spread many small fragments of tributyltin oxide anti-stain paint over the reef. An agreement was made between the Australian authorities and the ship owner about cleaning and stabilizing the reef, and a specialized service provider was recruited to carry out the work. This specialist was hired on 15 December for a three month programme which involved:
When the work was finished, an environmental follow-up programme
was set up for a ten year period (a programme which is still underway
at the present moment), in collaboration with the co-operative research
centre for the Great Barrier Reef's world heritage zone.
Name: Bunga Teratai Satu
Date: 2 November 2000
Accident area : Sudbury coral reef
Cause of spill : grounding
Type of pollutant : Tributyltin oxide (anti-stain paint)
Ship type : container ship
Date built : 1997
Flag : Malaysian
Last update: June 2011