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Ship Owner pays penalty of K150,000.00 - Papua New Guinea National Maritime Safety Authority

A ship owner has paid a penalty of K150,000.00 to the National Maritime Safety Authority (NMSA) for spilling oil into the pristine marine environment at the Simpson Harbour in Rabaul.

This negligence is in breach of Section 6 of the Marine Pollution (Ships & Installations) Act 2013. The penalty under Section 6 of this Law is K1 million.

After a considerable deliberation, NMSA decided to impose a penalty of K150,000.00 against TSP Marine Industries, Cabu Bawing, Philippines. In deciding the penalty, the Authority took into consideration that this shipping company was a first-time offender, had cooperated with the investigators, admitted to the offence committed & there was no damage caused by the oil spill as the spillage was contained immediately.

According to the incident report submitted by the captain of the FV. Queen Jina 101, during internal transfer of the fuel, the crew accidently overflowed one of the tanks and then spilled heavy fuel overboard into the pristine marine environment at the Simpson Harbour in Rabaul.

NMSA’s Manager, Investigations & Enforcement, Joseph Pyawan who led the team to investigate the incident said this is the first incident to be investigated and charged under the new Marine Pollution (Ships & Installations) Act 2013, which came into force in 2015.

NMSA General Manager/CEO, Paul Unas said this should be a warning to other ship owners and operators who maybe negligent or arrogant in carrying out their duties onboard ships that may cause damage to the marine life & environment, that NMSA will not hesitate to deal with them under the Marine Pollution (Ships & Installations) Act 2013.

The PNG National Maritime Safety Authority Act 2003 specifics that NMSA’s role includes setting standards and strengthens control over marine oil pollution from ships and clean-up operations and other environment damage caused by shipping in PNG coastal waters and water ways. The Authority is the National Lead Agency for the implementation of International Maritime Environment Conventions which PNG is party.

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