Delay as Rena oil pump 'blew out'

07:57, Oct 20 2011
The Rena, a Liberia-flagged 235m vessel, had been heading to Tauranga from Napier when it crashed into the Astrolabe Reef, about 7km north of Motiti Island.
The Rena, a Liberia-flagged 235m vessel, had been heading to Tauranga from Napier when it crashed into the Astrolabe Reef, about 7km north of Motiti Island.
The Rena, a Liberia-flagged 235m vessel, had been heading to Tauranga from Napier when it crashed into the Astrolabe Reef, about 7km north of Motiti Island.
The Rena, a Liberia-flagged 235m vessel, had been heading to Tauranga from Napier when it crashed into the Astrolabe Reef, about 7km north of Motiti Island.
The Rena, a Liberia-flagged 235m vessel, had been heading to Tauranga from Napier when it crashed into the Astrolabe Reef, about 7km north of Motiti Island.
The Rena, a Liberia-flagged 235m vessel, had been heading to Tauranga from Napier when it crashed into the Astrolabe Reef, about 7km north of Motiti Island.
The crippled Rena, with  a growing oil slick, off the coast of Mt Maunganui.
The crippled Rena, with a growing oil slick, off the coast of Mt Maunganui.
Low tide showed the extent of the problems facing the Rena's specialist salvage team.
Low tide showed the extent of the problems facing the Rena's specialist salvage team.
The crew had remained onboard despite the vessel's list.
The crew had remained onboard despite the vessel's list.
Rena - Listing
LISTING: Waves break over the reef while the Rena sits, stranded.
The ship has 1368 containers on board.
RENA: The ship has 1368 containers on board.
Rena crew
INJURED: A naval officer is carried to an ambulance after a member of the salvage crew fell on him during the evacuation of the ship.
Rena lists in heavy seas
This photo taken from the HMNZS Endeavour shows Rena listing in heavy seas. Between 30 and 70 containers fell from the Rena overnight.
Containers on the Rena's top deck
Many containers on the Rena's top deck are tipped on a heavy angle, close to toppling off.
Rena
POUNDED: Waves crash onto the listing Rena's deck.
Container ashore
A container coming ashore on the northern side of Motiti Island, which is around 7km from the ship grounding site.
Rena - Motiti Island
The first container to hit the rocks and break-up on the northern side of Motiti Island, which is around 7km from the ship.
crack appearing in the middle of the Rena's hull.
This image shows a crack appearing in the middle of the Rena's hull.
Containers fall off Rena
Rena losing containers as heavy swells wash across the ship's deck on the starboard side.
Rena crush
Containers have also been crushed as heavy swells wash across Rena's deck.
Rena - Salvage operation
An Air Force Iroquois helicopter lowers crew onto the Rena, Thursday October 13. What looks like smoke billowing from the ship is probably milk powder, Fonterra said. There were 90 containers of the product on the ship.
Rena - Salvage operation
An Air Force Iroquois helicopter lowers crew onto the Rena.
Rena - Salvage operation
The slick drifting from the Rena, seen from the air, Thursday October 13.
A Royal New Zealand Air Force helicopter winches a salvage expert onto the stricken container ship Rena.
A Royal New Zealand Air Force helicopter winches a salvage expert onto the stricken container ship Rena.
Rena
DEFORMED: Damage to the Rena's structure.
Rena
HEAVY DAMAGE: Rena lists to starboard, with the damage to her hull clear.
Salvors have attached platforms to the stricken ship Rena.
Salvors have attached platforms to the stricken ship Rena.
Platforms salvors have attached to the Rena as they attempt to resume pumping oil from the stricken ship.
Platforms salvors have attached to the Rena as they attempt to resume pumping oil from the stricken ship.
Containers ashore
Containers from the grounded cargo ship Rena are removed from east of the main beach at Mt Maunganui after washing ashore.
Rena
HEAVY LIST: Rena's cargo sits precariously on the deck of the ship.
Rena
HANGING IN THERE: The Awanuia sits behind the Rena and its leaning stack of containers.
Rena
CLEAR SPELL: Salvors are racing against time to remove oil from the Rena before bad weather hits late on Monday, October 17.
Rena
A Maritime NZ diagram shows how the Rena is grounded on the Astrolabe Reef.
Rena
A Maritime NZ diagram shows how the Rena is grounded on the Astrolabe Reef.
Rena
Calm conditions around Astrolabe Reef on Thursday, October 20, allowed these close up photos of the Rena's stern to be taken.
Rena
Rena's remaining containers hang precariously. More than 80 containers have fallen overboard. Many have come ashore, and others are being located on the seabed.
Rena
Rena's bow is broken and twisted from the impact with the Astrolabe Reef off Tauranga.
Rena
The ocean washes in and out of the wide fracture on Rena's starboard side.
Rena
Aerial shot taken in the morning of Sunday, October 23, showing a sheen of oil that had leaked from the Rena overnight.
Rena
Photo taken by salvage team looking out of Rena's bridge showing the list of the vessel against the horizon.

Oil is again being pumped from Rena after a booster pump blow-out earlier threatened the salvage operation.

Eight hundred bags of oily debris have been collected from the coastline today while more than 11 tonnes of oil had been removed from the Rena,

Martime New Zealand (MNZ) Salvage unit manager Dr Bruce Anderson said a booster pump was reinstalled after the circuit blow-out.

Clean up
LONG JOB: Volunteers help clean up the oil from the beach at Mt Maunganui.
Oil residues on Omanu beach at the 5 1/2 km beach entry point, Tuesday morning.
DEBRIS: Oil residues on Omanu beach at the 5 1/2 km beach entry point, Tuesday morning. Photographer Todd Murdoch says: 'I could smell the oil close to my house which is located 1km back from the beach.'
Oil on the beach near Mount Maunganui.
Oil on the beach near Mount Maunganui.
Sunny, 9 years, with his dead fish on Mt Maunganui beach.
Sunny, 9 years, with his dead fish on Mt Maunganui beach.
rena oil spill on Mt Maunganui Beach
Tauranga resident Chris Munro on Mt Maunganui beach, Wednesday morning.
penguin
COVERED: A bird lies dead on Mt Maunganui beach today.
Penguin
UNSURVIVABLE: A bird that has been washed up on the beach, coated in oil.
Papamoa
CASUALTY: One of the penguins that died following the oil spill. This was found at Papamoa just after high tide today.
Public meeting in Tauranga to discuss the unfolding disaster.
Environment Minister Nick Smith (centre) and Transport Minister Steven Joyce (right) at a public meeting in Tauranga to discuss the unfolding disaster.
Papamoa clean up
CLEAN-UP: Volunteers help clean up the oil from the beach at Papamoa
Papamoa clean up
CLEAN-UP: Volunteers collecting oil sludge from the beach at Papamoa
Papamoa clean up
CLEAN-UP: Papamoa beach is covered with oil sludge
Papamoa clean up
SPOILED: Papamoa beach is covered in oil
Albatros
CRIPPLED: A wandering albatross covered in oil in Tauranga
Albatros
SOILED: Oil blobs at the Maketu shoreline
Clean up
WAITING COLLECTION: Scores of bags full of oil await collection in Papamoa.
Clean up
LOADING: Bags full of oil are collected from the beach at Papamoa.
Oil washes up on Papamoa Beach.
Oil washes up on Papamoa Beach.
Container on Mt maunganui beach
A container from the stricken Rena, washed up on Mt Maunganui Beach, Thursday October 13.
Container on Mt Maunganui beach
A woman walks past a container from the stricken Rena, washed up on Mt Maunganui Beach, Thursday October 13.
Container on Mt Maunganui beach
A man walks on Mt Maunganui Beach, with a container from the stricken Rena in the distance, Thursday October 13.
The bleak scene as containers wash up on Mt Maunganui beach.
The bleak scene as containers wash up on Mt Maunganui beach.
Police check a container that has washed up on Mt Maunganui beach.
Police check a container that has washed up on Mt Maunganui beach.
Packets off meat patties from a container off the Rena have washed up on Mt Maunganui beach.
Packets of meat patties from a container off the Rena have washed up on Mt Maunganui beach.
Papamoa Beach oil clean-up
The clean-up operation on Papamoa Beach, Thursday October 13.
Papamoa Beach
Oil on Papamoa Beach, Thursday October 13.
Containers at Papamoa Beach
Containers washed up at Papamoa Beach, Thursday October 13.
Containers at Papamoa Beach
Two containers seen at Papamoa Beach on Thursday October 13.
Oil booms are prepared at the Maketu Estuary in the Bay of Plenty, Thursday October 13.
Oil booms are prepared at the Maketu Estuary in the Bay of Plenty, Thursday October 13.
Territorial soldiers from Auckland clean up Papamoa Beach, near Tauranga, Thursday October 13.
Territorial soldiers from Auckland clean up Papamoa Beach, near Tauranga, Thursday October 13.
Oil scooped from the surface of the water inside the Rena shipwreck's 1km exclusion zone.
Oil scooped from the surface of the water inside the Rena shipwreck's 1km exclusion zone.
Rena container
STRANDED: One of the Rena's broken containers which washed up on Mt Maunganui beach. Pictured Friday, October 14.
Rena container
PULLED ASHORE: One of the Rena's broken containers which washed up on Mt Maunganui beach. Pictured Friday, October 14.
Rena container
SALVAGE:Containers sit in the water on Mt Maunganui beach. Pictured Friday, October 14.
Rena containers
SCATTERED: Containers on the beach just south of Mount Maunganui.
Rena penguin
A little blue penguin awaits transportation to the National Oiled Wildlife Recovery Centre in Tauranga.
Rena Container
ON THE MOVE: A container is hauled off the beach.
John Key Rena
Prime Minister John Key attended a public meeting in Papamoa and went in a helicopter to see the Rena.
Container Rena
Containers on Mount Maunganui Beach.
Volunteers clean up packets of burger patties from the broken contanier washed up on Mount Maunganui Beach.
Volunteers clean up packets of burger patties from the broken container washed up on Mount Maunganui Beach.
A seagull shows the effects of the spilt oil at Makatu.
A seagull shows the effects of the spilt oil at Makatu.
Advice about wildlife that may be affected by the Rena oil spill, at Mt Maunganui.
Advice about wildlife that may be affected by the Rena oil spill, at Mt Maunganui.
Little Blue Penguin gets a clean
Wellington Zoo vet Baukje Lenting with a Little Blue Penguin that is at Tauranga’s Bird Recovery Centre having oil cleaned from it using a toothbrush.
PM John Key views Little blue Penguins
PM John Key visits the Bird recovery Centre where he watches Little blue Penguins that have been cleaned of oil.
Protest rena
MAKING A STAND: Protesters gather outside the Tauranga District Court ahead of the appearances of the Rena's captain and navigator on Wednesday, October 19.
Protest rena
AGAINST DRILLING: Protesters march against offshore drilling ahead of the appearances of the Rena's captain and navigator in the Tauranga District Court on Wednesday, October 19.
Rena protest
EN MASSE: Protesters march against deep sea drilling in Tauranga, ahead of the appearance of the Rena's captain and navigator in court.
Rena protest
IN NUMBERS: Protesters march against deep sea drilling in Tauranga.
Waihau Bay - rena
Debris covered in oil have wash-up at Waihau Bay on the East Cape where Taika Waititi's Boy was filmed.
Rena Bruce Goff
Oil responder Bruce Goff with the Terminator oil skimmer ready for deployment. on Sunday, October 23.

Divers have also entered the ship to investigate the seals of the starboard-side engine room manhole.

Martime New Zealand (MNZ) Salvage unit manager Bruce Anderson said the pump used to remove the oil had to be removed but a replacement was on its way to the vessel where it ran aground on the Astrolabe Reef off Tauranga's coast more than two weeks ago.  

MNZ National on-scene commander Ian Niblock said 800 bags of oily debris were collected off the Bay of Plenty coastline today. It was not know how much oil had been removed from Rena however, after pumping began again at 12.09pm today. Anderson said oil was being pumped across 160 metres.

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It has been confirmed that oil has been collecting on the surf-line, hidden below the surface of the sand. The beaches will remain closed until it is all assessed and collected.

Of the 88 containers that have so far fallen off Rena, 49 have been located, leaving 39 unaccounted for, Anderson said.

Thirty five containers are floating on the ocean and 16 had sunk but could be collected at a later date.

Divers were able to assess Rena's starboard side today and noticed a leak in one of the side doors. Salvors would have to pump water out of the vessel before carrying out work on number five tank. They would likely form two dams to block the doors.
 
Environment Minister Nick Smith said no significant new oil has come shore from the ship today and said it was also good news that not as many birds are being found dead.

He said removing the oil on the starboard side, which was estimated to be about 350 tonnes, would be an incredibly challenging exercise. "I will not be sleeping easy until every drop of oil is off the Rena."

Salvors have been able to continue pumping oil without the booster. He estimated that up to 87 tonnes of oil could have been pumped off the Rena.

BEACH CLEAN-UP CONTINUES

Volunteer beach clean-ups have resumed at the main Mount Maunganui beach, Maketu, and along the eastern coastline.

There were no reports of new oil on beaches or from the Rena, however oiled debris had washed up in parts of the East Cape, National On Scene Commander Ian Niblock said.

"Oil is occurring at natural collection points along the coast from Mt Maunganui to Maketu and we're using these collection points as a base for ongoing clean-up operations.

"We're well prepared and have response options in place with more than 6000 volunteers, along with daily surveillance from air and on shore.

"We're also reviewing the beach closures for the Bay of Plenty coastline, aware that the long weekend is coming up. We want people to enjoy themselves, but the safety of the public is paramount.

"We do need to remind local communities to not touch any oil or oiled debris and to report it to 0800 OIL SPILL. It's also important not to eat seafood in areas where there has been or currently is oil contamination," Niblock said.

OIL COULD SPREAD FURTHER

Oil and debris from the stricken ship Rena could potentially reach further south, said MNZ.

Oil-covered animal skins, bags of meat and timber yesterday washed up at Waihau Bay, hundred of kilometres from the Rena, as containers and debris made their way east.

Authorities were looking at extending the exclusion zone around the Rena.

The zone was increased from 1.7km around the Rena to an area measuring 40km by 45km last week.

If the oil did spread further around the east coast of the North Island MNZ had operations in place, the agency said.

The Rena was stable overnight, Anderson said, and the large crack on the starboard side hadn't changed.

"It's about 60cm on the starboard side. The port side is a messy area."

ECONOMIC IMPACT

The economic impact of oil arriving at the settlement of Waihau Bay was immediate, with the holiday weekend hopes dashed.

The bay featured in the popular New Zealand movie Boy.

The Waihau Bay Fishing Club cancelled its annual Labour weekend fishing competition.

People from as far as Auckland and Wellington had planned to come for the weekend and had booked accommodation, Waihau Bay Fishing Club secretary Christine Elmiger said.

But there probably wasn't any point in them coming anymore, "unless they want to bring their gumboots and gloves", she said.

"We were hoping it wouldn't come this far but it has. It's so devastating to see it on our beaches."

Jan Sanford from Oceanside Apartments in Waihau Bay said her establishment was now empty when it had been fully booked for Labour Weekend.

"I'm totally empty now, and I'm never empty for Labour Weekend," she said.

She had had bookings from as far away as Taupo and Auckland, many staying for a weekend fishing contest.

Boaties did not want to put their valuable boats into oil-affected water, as cleaning was difficult and oil was damaging to inflatable vessels, she said.

A coastal navigation warning had been issued to include the East Cape, following the discovery of the oil-covered remains of containers that washed ashore at Te Kaha and Te Araroa.

Aerial observations yesterday showed a very light sheen of oil moving away from the ship in to the south, he said.

Rena's captain and navigational officer appeared in court yesterday and were remanded on bail until November 2.

They face charges under section 65 of the Maritime Act for "operating a vessel in a manner causing unnecessary danger or risk".

- MICHELLE COOKE and KEVIN NORQUAY