PCG collects over 6,800 liters of oily water mixture amid Oriental Mindoro offshore spill clean-up

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 19) — The Oriental Mindoro oil spill clean-up continues nearly three weeks after a tanker with 800,000 liters of industrial oil sank in waters off Naujan town.

The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) on Sunday said it has so far collected 6,803 liters of oily water mixture and 65 sacks of oil-contaminated debris in its offshore response operations to the oil spill.

For its shoreline operations, at least 212 sacks of oil-contaminated materials, or some 1,938 sacks and 22 drums of waste, have been gathered in coastal barangays in Naujan, Bulalacao, and Pola since March 1.

Oriental Mindoro Governor Bonz Dolor told CNN Philippines that authorities are working towards sealing the leakage from the tanker, as traces of oil continue to resurface despite the regular clean-up.

“Kaya ang priority po natin ay makuha natin ang ROV – remotely operated vehicle -- para masisid na ang ilalim ng dagat, matakpan na ang leak na meron, makuha ang remaining oil sa barko,” Dolor said on CNN Philippines’ Newsroom Weekend on Sunday.

[Translation: So, our priority is to get the ROV – remotely operated vehicle - so that we can dive, plug the leak, and get the remaining oil from the ship.]

The governor said the oil slick has currently affected over 100,000 people in 15 barangays of Calapan town.

“Kasi Oriental Mindoro is known na naglalabas ng pagkaing dagat. Kaya lang, because of the oil spill, malaki ang epekto nito sa local na industriya at sa export natin na ginagawa talaga ng Mindoro,” he said.

[Translation: Oriental Mindoro is known for its seafood production. Because of the oil spill, our export industry has been greatly impacted.]

Dolor also called on the Department of Trade and Industry to implement a price freeze in the province until the oil spill problem is resolved.