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Fri Nov 28 10:27:51 CAT 2014

Anger at Durban harbour spill

Canaan Mdletshe | 15 November, 2012 00:39
Durban harbour. File photo

Environmental activists yesterday vowed to take Transnet and the eThekwini Municipality to task following a third chemical spill in Durban harbour in less than three months.

"We feel it's time to take the city and Transnet to task. We can't allow the situation to continue. Clearly, profit is put before people's lives. We will start by demanding a meeting with both parties," said Desmond D'Sa, chairman of the South Durban Community Environmental Alliance.

Transnet's National Ports Authority said the petrochemical fuel was found in bund drains [enclosures designed to hold at least 110% of the contents of a liquid storage tank or drums without risk of their escaping] at the Island View Quarry site and had not spilt into the harbour.

"The fuel is being pumped from the drains into ballast tanks and there is no foreseeable impact on the environment or the community of the nearby Bluff area as the spill is contained in the bund drains. The joint operations committee - made up of the oil majors, the eThekwini fire department and the Port of Durban, has been activated," said TNPA spokesman Zama Mncwabe.

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