Kupang, E Nusa Tenggara, (ANTARA News) - PT Ocean Tanker, owner of Ocean Princess tanker that ran aground in Alor Sea, East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), December 12, 2018, will pay compensation for polluting and damaging the Pantar Alor Strait Marine Nature Sanctuary.

"The company has sent a statement letter and a letter of understanding to the NTT maritime affairs and fishery office. The letters give a guarantee that it would pay compensation for the damage to marine biota in the Alor waters and surrounding area," Saleh Goro, head of the office`s evaluation team, stated here, Monday.

As the guarantee letters were received, the Kalabahi seaport authorities have allowed the tanker to sail again.

"Hence, the ship was allowed to leave the NTT waters several days ago," he remarked.

The material losses inflicted by the incident was still being calculated.

Coral reefs in Pantar Strait and Alor Sea suffered serious damage, as the tanker ran aground in the shore off Aemoli Village, Alor District.

The Indonesian government can discharge the corporate for the environmental losses in accordance with existing regulations without trial by considering that the grounding was categorized as an accident.

Findings of the office`s team members recently deployed to the ship-grounding site indicate that the marine life and coral reef degradation were obvious.

According to the evaluation team head, Saleh Goro, a total of 28 spots of coral reefs and a coral reef colony, measuring 10 x 130 centimeters in diameter, were extensively damaged by the grounding of the tanker carrying diesel fuel from Timor Leste to Singapore.

The ill-fated vessel, sailing under the Cook Islands flag from the Timor Leste City of Dili to Singapore, ran aground in the vicinity waters off Alor Island of Alor District.

Carrying 18 crew members onboard, the tanker`s skipper is identified as Ahira Sroyer.

Reporting by Bernadus Tokan, Fardah A

Reporter: Antara
Editor: Sri Haryati
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