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Environment

Half of oil from Mauritius spill recovered: ship owner

Volunteers help clear 1,000 tons of leaked fuel in Indian Ocean

About 1,000 tons of fuel oil have leaked from the Wakashio since it ran aground on a reef off the coast of Mauritius in this photo handed out by the French army.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Nearly half the roughly 1,000 tons of oil spilled from a ship that ran aground off the coast of Mauritius has been recovered, according to information provided by operator Mitsui O.S.K. Lines on Tuesday.

Volunteers and workers have removed about 460 tons of fuel oil from the Indian Ocean and the coast of Mauritius since the July 25 accident involving the Panama-flagged bulk carrier Wakashio, which was carrying about 4,000 tons of oil.

The breach damaged a 1,180-ton tank, which has leaked nearly all of its contents into the ocean. Mauritius, an Indian Ocean island nation off the African coast, declared a state of emergency last week due to the disaster.

The carrier's owner, Japan-based Nagashiki Shipping, and the government of Mauritius are transferring the remaining 2,800 tons off the vessel. About 1,000 tons of oil have been pumped out so far, said Japanese shipping group Mitsui O.S.K., which chartered the Wakashio.

The two companies are working with local authorities to investigate the incident.

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