TasPorts successfully removes Wilga from containment area

TasPorts has safely removed third tug Wilga from the incident site and oil spill containment area


31 January 2022

TasPorts teams have been working around the clock to actively manage the incident at the Port of Devonport following a collision between Goliath and TasPorts’ tugs Campbell Cove and York Cove.

TasPorts Chief Operating Officer Stephen Casey said significant planning over the last few days was integral in the successful extraction of the third tug from the containment area earlier today.

“At the time of the incident, a third tug – Wilga - was alongside, narrowly avoiding the collision. In response to the incident, TasPorts teams mobilised quickly and deployed oil spill response equipment within 45 minutes of the collision, which captured the third vessel in the containment area,” he said.

“A plan was developed under the guidance and direction of the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) to enable the tug’s extraction, whilst minimising impact to the port and potential oil dispersal.

“The plan saw Wilga towed from the containment area as a ‘dead ship’ by tug Watagan from the Port of Burnie, minimising disruption to contaminated water. Additional controls were also been put in place for the towage operation by TasPorts Harbour Master to ensure the ongoing integrity of the oil spill containment,” Mr Casey said.

“The extraction of the tug was only possible due to the success to date of the oil spill response and perfect environmental conditions early this afternoon.”

Following the successful removal, the tug will now undergo sea trials to confirm no damage was sustained due to Friday’s incident, before returning to normal service.