eKathimerini — Authorities on the island of Salamina in the Saronic Gulf on the west coast of Attica said on Monday that an oil spill off the island’s eastern coast is spreading and has become “an environmental disaster.”
The spill was caused by the sinking of the Aghia Zoni II tanker on Saturday, southwest of the islet of Atalanti near Psytalleia. According to reports, the coastline stretching from Kinosoura to the Selinia community has “turned black” and authorities fear a new leak from the sunken ship.
According to the island’s mayor, Isidora Papathanasiou, the weather “turned on Sunday afternoon and brought the oil spill to Salamina.”
“This a huge environmental and financial disaster, and all the (island’s) eastern coast is covered with crude oil,” she said, adding that the “smell is intense and our eyes are stinging.”
The Aghia Zoni II took on water while it was anchored and sank at 2.45 a.m., after sailing from the Aspropyrgos distilleries in the early hours of Saturday carrying 2,200 metric tons of fuel oil and 370 metric tons of marine gas oil.
Its crew of two were rescued by a nearby ship and taken to shore, where doctors at Piraeus’s Tzaneio Hospital gave them the all-clear.
The Piraeus Port Authority is conducting an investigation into the causes of the sinking and has implemented a monitoring system to contain the leakages.
The company that owns the small tanker has also dispatched a specialized crew to secure the vessel and clean up any pollution is may cause.