The heavy duty salvage tug Smit Amandla is expected at Nightingale today at 14.00. It is thought there will be little to salvage and that the task now is essentially a clean-up operation. It is understood the total load of unprocessed whole soya beans was 65,266 tonnes and the vessel was carrying about 1400 tonnes of fuel oil. Crucially the tug will assess how much soya and oil remains aboard and what effect any spill has had / will have on the fragile marine ecosystem and the valuable local fishing industry
On board the tug is an environmental specialist Estelle van der Merwe who was in charge of SANCCOB at the time of the Treasure oil spill which effected South African seabirds and will advise the Nightingale operation. SANCCOB (The Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds) and is an internationally recognised leader in seabird rehabilitation.
Pictures below taken by Sean from aboard MV Edinburgh on Friday 18th March show the two main sections of MS Oliva: The top picture shows stern section capsized and showing the exposed black hull: the lower picture shows the larger bow and main cargo hold section lying east of Spinners Point close to where it went aground. Other images below.
Images received Sunday 20th March from the Tristan Conservation Team of Simon Glass, Wayne Swain and Matthew Green showing top left: MV Edinburgh (1085 tonnes 62.5 m long and the grounded MS Oliva (75,300 t & 225 m long) on Spinners Point on 16th March before the ship was driven further onto the reef. The team also took these awful images of distressed Northern Rockhopper Penguins ashore on Nightingale Island.