Oil firm insists only 39 tonnes of crude oil leaked into the sea off Rayong but accepts responsibility
The Star Petroleum Refining Company has issued an announcement insisting that only 39 tonnes, or about 47,000 litres of crude oil leaked from its broken offshore pipeline, near the deep-sea single mooring platform about 25km from Rayong’s Map Ta Phut, on the night of January 25th.
The company also offered an apology for the impact of the oil leak and offered an assurance that the company will take full responsibility for the damage to and rehabilitation of the environment, adding that a comprehensive investigation is being conducted, in coordination with relevant agencies and outside experts, to determine the cause of the accident.
As soon as it was discovered that oil had leaked into the sea, the company took action to control the spread of the spilt oil, including the deployment of an emergency response team, to minimize impacts on communities, the shoreline and marine environment under the supervision of the Royal Thai Navy, said the statement.
It admitted that the incident has caused damage, hence the willingness to take full responsibility and to pay fair compensation.
The oil leaks prompted a massive clean-up operation, mounted by the Royal Thai Navy, the Pollution Control Department, the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources and Star Petroleum Refining Plc, to save the popular tourist destination, Samet Island, and the beaches. Some of the oil did, however, breach the booms protecting the coast and was swept ashore on Mae Ram Phueng beach.
A booth has been set up on the beach to receive complaints from people affected, in coordination with the Muang district officials. A hotline, 1567, has also been set up to receive complaints, according to the statement.
Attapol Charoenchansa, director-general of Pollution Control Department, has said that, unless the actual amount of oil spilt can be ascertained, it is difficult to assess the impacts on the environment correctly and to calculate the appropriate amount of compensation.