Another oil leak in the pipeline off the coast of Rayong has been reported by the Star Petroleum Refining Public Company, which has sent a letter to the Map Ta Phut Provincial Police Station asking permission to repair the pipe and prevent further environmental damage. Since late January, oil leaking from the pipes have polluted Rayong’s Mae Ramphueng Beach, with some swimmers complaining of a smell in the water, and oil sticking to their body.
On Tuesday, the company reported another leak found at an underwater pipeline north of the first leakage point and only a small amount of oil has leaked out over time. According to the letter, strong currents could cause more oil to be leaked and they have asked permission to immediately wrap the pipe to seal the leak.
Oil booms, 10 ships with degreaser spray, and oil skimmers are on standby if there happens to be a leak while the pipeline is being repaired. The repairing process is now waiting to start after the approval from the authorities from Map Ta Phut Provincial Police Station and Marine Department.
In Mae Ramphueng Beach, where the oil slicks washed up on the beach, hundreds of tourism operators have filed complaints asking for compensation for losses related to the oil leak, according to the advisor to the Rayong Tourism Council.
“The Tourism Council is gathering data on the damages suffered by Rayong’s tourism businesses, which had earned around 950 million baht in January… We will use this figure along with an estimation of tourism revenue in the following months to calculate the total compensation.”
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