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07 May 2019

THE controversial foreign vessel MV Solomon Trader which had run aground at Lavagu bay west Rennell will soon be re-floated and towed from the reef.

Director of National Disaster Council Lottie Yates in an interview with the press confirmed this.

The salvage operation of this vessel MV Solomon Trader was made possible through the support of a foreign specialist team.

 They travelled to the wreckage site and contained the oil spillage which has caused panic and concern by local authorities and people in the area.

“Final preparation for the towing of this vessel is well under way and may commence within the next week or so.

“All necessary heavy equipment and machinery for the salvage operation are now put in motion and are ready to go,” stated Mr Yates.

Final assessment of the environment will be commencing after the vessel is tow to safety.

The NDC Director also thanked all those who have been involved in the oil spillage and salvage operation, significantly the foreign specialists.

“Bintan Mining, local companies and all the local community workers must also be applauded for their job well done,” expressed Yates.       

Meanwhile, communities of Lavagu bay have welcomed the announcement by the National Disaster Council (NDC) that the stricken vessel will be re-floated very soon.

In an interview with the national broadcaster Yates has confirmed that the foreign vessel MV Solomon trader will be re-floated in two weeks’ time.

The announcement has prompted many Rennellese to express their gratitude and appreciation in the social media and on the national radio.

A local elder Jimmy Puia speaking on behalf of his community has thanked the foreign salvage specialist including Australia and New Zealand for their effort and contributions towards the salvage operation.

Mr Puia expressed his communities’ appreciation  to all who have involved in one way or the other in ensuring both the oil spillage and  the salvage operation is fully completed.

He also thanked Bintan Mining (SI) Limited for their assistance and support throughout the salvage operation from day one till now.

Mr Puia also extended his special appreciation and thanks to all his people and communities for their patience and tolerance throughout these times.

 The boat ran around in early February which has cause oil spill to parts of the bay.

Since then work had been made to contain the oil spill.




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