Oil spill in Tobago waters now entering Grenada’s marine area

Home*Cover Story*News

Oil spill in Tobago waters now entering Grenada’s marine area

The oil spill that has been impacting the coastline of the sister isle Tobago is now said to be entering the marine area of Grenada.

As such, the spice isle has since contacted the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency and other partners for assistance.

New satellite data analysed by the Tobago Emergency Management Agency, captured at 5.37 am on Wednesday, indicated the possible oil slick had extended approximately 63 nautical miles or 118 kilometres west-northwest of Tobago.

The extent of the slick now extends approximately 30 kilometres outside Trinidad and Tobago’s Economic Exclusive Zone (EEZ), the marine area for which T&T is responsible.

According to TEMA, this possible oil slick originates from the overturned vessel, Gulfstream, approximately 150 metres off the southern coast of Tobago and is nearly 78 nautical miles or 144 kilometres in length.

TEMA also said they have a high confidence level “attributed to the known suspected point source,” meaning the slick comes from the capsized ship.

TEMA added, “Variations in slick thickness were noted, and a thin oil-like substance was present in the imagery. Drone surveillance and ground truthing were also conducted to increase the confidence level.”

TEMA has requested “advanced aerial truthing” to be conducted via a flyover by the T&T Air Guard.

Meanwhile, Grenada’s National Disaster Management Agency (NaDMA) said they have “evoked the tenets of its oil spill hazard-specific protocol and contacted the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), as well as other local and regional partners to assist as a precautionary measure.”

Yesterday, NaDMA convened an emergency meeting of their National Oil Spill Committee, a sub-committee of the National Emergency Advisory Council, to brief members and make preparations should any response arise.

The Grenada government is currently in contact with T&T’s Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs “to ascertain the extent to which the oil slick is likely to affect Grenada.”