Oil pollution in Maracaibo lake


We´ve noted recently an increase in oil spillage from PDVSA terminal (Bajo Grande) at Maracaibo Lake. This is causing that all vessels calling to that terminal or to close areas are getting the hulls stained with black oil. It´s important to remark that the harbormaster of Maracaibo doesn’t allows any cleaning activity inside the lake for which vessels should go to another Venezuelan port such as Amuay bay or Jose for cleaning the hull. Below you can see some recent press reports regarding the oil spillage on Maracaibo lake:
http://www.noticierovenevision.net/nacionales/2013/octubre/4/77867=derrame-de-petroleo-en-aguas-del---lago-de-maracaibo-fue-confirmado-por-autoridades-zulianas
http://www.venezuelaaldia.com/2013/10/pescadores-denuncian-presuntos-derrames-de-petroleo-en-el-lago-de-maracaibo/
As pointed out, PDVSA is indeed used to provide with LOI to those vessels that calls at their facilities and that gets the hull stained with oil. Most of the times, P&I correspondent liaise with PDVSA for obtaining the LOI and later supervise that the hull is cleaned up to Master satisfaction. It´s important to all Master to notify correspondents and to beging preparing a LOP once is noticed that the hull is getting stained with oil.
The first problem here is that PDVSA only accepts responsibility for the cleaning and as such, we´ve not found any records of PDVSA accepting claims for demurrage caused for the time spent for cleaning. Of course all vessels administrators have decided historically to clean the ships in order to avoid fines in foreign ports.
Should you have any further question, please don’t hesitate on contacting us.
Carlos Carrasco
Operations Manager
Venepandi, C.A.

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Oil sprayed by refinery at Punta Cardon causing ship/cargo possible contamination

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Oil Leakages at Maracaibo Lake causing hull stains

All concerning parties should be aware that the presence of oil leakages in Maracaibo Lake is a frequent issue and most vessels transiting this area are subject to oil stains on the hulls with the subsequent loss of time due the necessary cleaning arrangement.

Increasing Ignition during loading of petcoke at the port of Amuay

We´ve recently noticed that the number of cases of ignition of petcoke on board at the port of Amuay has increased with the subsequent risk to the safety on board.

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