February 15, 2013
Boat operators told to stop using SOL tanker mooring facilities

General Manager of SOL St Vincent Steve Francis is again urging boat operators on the Grenadine island of Bequia and elsewhere to stop using their tanker mooring facilities.{{more}}

Speaking at the opening ceremony of a four-day ship/shore workshop on Tuesday, Francis said that the issue of boatmen who use SOL’s buoys to moor yachts and other vessels has been a cause for concern.

The issue was first raised back in 2011 when a similar ship-to-shore workshop was held here.

Back then, Francis said that some

boatmen were charging yachtsmen and issuing receipts for using SOL’s equipment.

The situation has got worse, he said, as some would drop anchor on to the underwater pipelines.

According to Francis, a pipeline was recently repaired at a cost of just over US$100,000, after it was damaged by a dropped anchor.

“This, as you are well aware, is not only costly to us, but also very dangerous,” Francis said.

“I, therefore, appeal to those boatmen who use our facilities to desist from doing so.

“We have a duty to provide a safe berth to oil tankers and to all fuel discharge locations,” he said.

If this could not be ensured, then tankers will not come to discharge fuel at the particular site.

“This matter should therefore concern everyone, as it has both environmental and economical consequences; so please, I beg of them to leave our moorings alone,” Francis said. (DD)