An 80,000-ton freighter collided with an oil tanker Saturday, spilling an undisclosed amount oil into the water off South Korea's largest port of Busan, Coast Guard officials said.
The collision opened a large hole, about 20 centimeters by 30
centimeters, in the hull of the cargo ship, from which fuel oil
gushed out, they said.
The accident occurred at about 2:20 p.m. as the freighter
approached the oil tanker to replenish its fuel, the officials
said, adding that the tanker had planned to transfer 1,500 tons of
oil, the officials said.
Emergency actions were taken to stop the oil spill but an oil
slick about 800 meters wide was found formed on the water, they
said. The oil spill was stopped three hours later.
The Coast Guard said five of its cutters and two naval vessels
were working to contain the damage but their efforts were hampered
by high waves. Another oil slick some 200 meters wide was sighted
moving northeast from the ships.
Coast Guard officials speculated that the collision might have
been caused by high waves. They said crew members from both ships
were being questioned to determine the exact cause of the mishap.