Dispatch of Japan Disaster Relief Team for Oil Spill Incident in the Singapore Straits

October 17, 1997

  1. On October 17 (Fri.), the Government of Japan decided to dispatch a Japan Disaster Relief Team (Expert Team) of six members of the Maritime Safety Agency ( and equipment to collect spilled oil) to Singapore, which has been sufferring oil spill because of a collision of tankers in the Singapore Straits in the night of October 15 (Wed.).

  2. Around 9 p.m. (Japan time: around 10 p.m.) of October 15 (Wed.), the Thai-registered crude-oil tanker "ORAPIN GLOBAL" (129,702 gross tons) collided with the Cyprus-registered tanker "EVOIKOS" (75,426 gross tons) at the point 1º 10'52" N. and 103º 48'30" E. within the west-bound traffic lane, about 5 km south of the Singapore Port Limit. Much oil spilled out from some of the EVOIKOS tanks which were broken open by the collision. There is no danger of the tankers' sinking and no one was injured. The cause of the accident is now being checked and a navigational warning was issued for the accident area.

    The oil spill, which has reached 25,000 tons, has now spread over, at least, some 5km x 12km. It is very likely that the amount will be more than four times that of the oil spill from the Nakhodka (over 6,200 KL). It is feared that the oil will reach Sentosa Island and the mainland of Singapore. Serious effects have been observed on mangrove forests and coral reefs within the Raffles Islands.

    In such a situation, the Government of Singapore has established a disaster headquarters within the Maritime and Port Authority, and is using 37 vessels to remove and collect the oil spill, and laying booms at the mouth of the Singapore River and the coast of Sentosa Island. It has also requested emergency aid from the Japanese Government.

  3. The Government of Japan has decided to extend this emergency aid, with a view to preventing the oil spill from having bad effects on the living and marine environments and to contributing to the safe navigation of the Singapore Straits, which is a major trade route for Japan and other countries, taking account of the seriousness of the disaster and the friendly relations with Singapore.

  4. Itinerary
    October 18 (Sat.)
    9:30 a.m. : Assemble at B-4 Special Waiting Room, 4th floor, Second Terminal, New Tokyo International Airport (Narita)
    11:30 a.m. :Leave Narita JL719
    (Equipment will arrive at Singapore separately early on October 19 (Sun.).)

(END)

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