Yemen oil tanker: ‘Pivotal chapter’ concludes however necessary work stays

The meticulous effort onboard the rusting FSO Safer spanned months of preparation and almost 13 weeks of execution by the SMIT salvage group, which was contracted by the UN Growth Programme (UNDP).

“The UN and the broad group of companions that help the Safer challenge have up to now succeeded in stopping the worst-case state of affairs of a large oil spill within the Pink Sea which with apparent potential catastrophic environmental, humanitarian and financial repercussions,” UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric instructed reporters at an everyday UN press briefing, in New York.

Oil from the Safer was transferred to the alternative vessel Yemen, previously often called Nautica. The Yemen solid off from the Safer Sunday night time, native time, to a holding anchorage level pending the set up of specialised tools for safely storing the risky cargo.

Vital work stays

“Nevertheless, important work stays,” Mr. Dujarric continued, noting {that a} specialised buoy is but to be delivered and put in to moor the Yemen to the Safer for secure storage of the oil, in addition to the towing and recycling of the outdated tanker.

To finish the challenge, $22 million continues to be required. Beneficiant Member States, the personal sector and the worldwide public have already offered $121 million in funding.  

“We’re relying on additional beneficiant help to complete this important mission,” Mr. Dujarric urged.

Worst case state of affairs averted

A spill from FSO Safer would have devastated fishing communities on Yemen’s Pink Beach, and uncovered 1000’s of communities to life-threatening toxins and induced irreversible harm to sea life, coral reefs and mangroves.

It might have closed the ports of Hudaydah and Saleef – which convey meals, gas and life-saving provides into a rustic the place 17 million are depending on worldwide help for survival.

Tourism additionally would have suffered vastly and important delivery by the Bab al-Mandab Strait to the Suez Canal may have been disrupted, costing billions of {dollars} per day.  

The potential value of clean-up alone was estimated at $20 billion.


Constructed in 1976 as a supertanker and transformed a decade later to be a floating storage and offloading facility (FSO) for oil, the Safer is moored about 4.8 nautical miles off the coast of Hudaydah Governorate in Yemen.

The vessel’s structural integrity deteriorated considerably as a consequence of lack of restore and upkeep following the outbreak of the battle in Yemen in 2015, placing the ship susceptible to breaking up.

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