10 Apr 2010

Oil pumped from ship grounded on Great Barrier Reef

6:28 pm on 10 April 2010

Salvagers in Australia have pumped almost 40 tonnes of oil from a coal carrier grounded on the Great Barrier Reef.

The Shen Neng ran aground on Douglas Shoal off the Rockhampton coast of central Queensland on 3 April, spilling more than two tonnes of oil. More than 970 tonnes still on the ship is being pumped out.

Queensland Premier Anna Bligh says the ship's insurer will be forced to pay for the salvage operation, but the top priority was to get the ship safely out without damaging the reef.

The Chinese state-owned company Shenzhen Energy Transport issued a statement on Friday apologising for the incident. Ms Bligh says it could face fines of up to $A1 million over the incident.