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Salvors start Shen Neng 1 oil transfer

Brisbane: Salvors have started an internal transfer of fuel oil onboard the bulker Shen Neng 1 stricken on the Great Barrier Reef. Bunker oil is being transferred within the Shenzhen Energy Transport -owned ship to stabilise it before an attempt to refloat the vessel. "This morning we'll again get on with transferring oil from vulnerable tanks to more secure tanks to minimise the risk of further oil spilling into the water," said Patrick Quirk, general manager, Queensland Maritime Safety. "This can initially be done during daylight hours so that we can see and take care of any oil which could enter the water during this process however our aim is for zero damage." Once fuel has been transferred internally the process of a ship-to-ship transfer is expected to start in the next 24 to 48 hours. "Any reports that we're 'refloating' the ship today are probably a little premature ?" safely refloating the ship is the goal of course but transferring the oil is the next stage in our step-by-step risk-based approach," he said. [07/04/10]

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