MAERSK container ship massive oil spill in Hong Kong

Jan 7 Update: Confirmed oil spill caused by heavy fuel overflow during bunkering operation, quantity of fuel leaked overboard unknown, cleansing still under way.

Jan 6: Massive oil spill from container ship MAERSK GATESHEAD occurred early in the morning Jan 6 in Hong Kong, at Kwai Tsing Container Terminal, where the ship docked in the afternoon Jan 5. Shortly after, bunker tanker CARLUNG moored alongside container ship, obviously for bunkering. Spill was reported to authorities at 0530 HK time Jan 6, anti pollution operation was launched, and as of evening, was still under way. No doubt spill occurred during bunkering operation, though it is not known yet, who’s to blame and what went wrong. Judging from photo, oil leaked overboard from starboard cargo deck, during night time, probably that’s why it was spotted too late to stop fuel transfer and avoid overboard leak.
Container ship MAERSK GATESHEAD, IMO 9235543, dwt 62007, capacity 4340 TEU, built 2002, flag Denmark.
Bunker tanker CARLUNG, IMO 9637997, dwt 2734, built 2012, flag HK, manager CALLANY Ltd., HK.



My name is Mikhail Voytenko, I’m Russian, professional merchant marine navigator, by education and former experience. I own and run Maritime Bulletin website for more than 10 years. I've been involved in solving a number of piracy hijack cases, including the hijack of ro-ro FAINA, loaded with tanks. It was me who made public, and unravel, freighter ARCTIC SEA mystery. I've been also closely involved in a number of maritime disaster, one of them being MSC FLAMINIA major fire.