Carcasses of cows line the Gatos Mortos beach after a livestock carrier, loaded with some 5,000 cows, capsized at the Vila do Conde port in Bacarena, Para state, Brazil, October 13, 2015. REUTERS/Tarso Sarraf
A port town in northern Brazil has been brought to a near standstill more than a week after a livestock carrier loaded with thousands of cattle capsized and sank at the port, killing the majority of the animals.
The accident occurred October 6 when the Lebanese-flagged livestock carrier Haidar, which had just loaded some 5,000 cows bound for Venezuela, overturned as it departed the Port of Vila do Conde in Barcarena, Pará state, Brazil. Some of the animals managed to escape the holds of the ship by scrambling onto the overturned hull, but the vast majority of the animals perished in the accident.
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Now, more than a week later, the rotting carcasses of the thousands of cattle have been left to decompose on local beaches, posing a major health risk to residents.
Local officials are now calling for a complete halt to activities at the port until a cleanup solution is reached.
The cattle were owned by international beef producer Minerva SA, who has said that the contracted shipping company, which it has not named, is responsible for the cargo.
The 6,449 DWT MV Haidar is one of six livestock carriers owned by Tamara Shipping, based in Lebanon. The ship was built in 1994.
No humans were injured in the initial capsizing.
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