Our top commenter from down under, Ian, has sent me a wrap-up of the Pasha Bulker story:
“PB left our shores several weeks ago under tow to an Asian shipyard. She was minus her rudder that apparently came off during re-floating attempts. It has been retrieved and presently sits in a local scrap yard. Given the surge in tourism generated by the grounding there has been considerable debate about erecting a permanent memorial to the events. The present difficulty is one of cultural difference with the Japanese owners wishing the embarrassing reminder of the grounding into the melting pot just as locals see the rudder as a very appropriate reminder of their affection for the Pasha Bulker. Negotiations are continuing!
Meanwhile, a report has surfaced suggesting that the Pasha Bulker was one of 50 ships advised two weeks before the grounding that they would no longer be able to use port facilities because of the time it was taking for them to de-ballast. Hence another airing of the allegation that ships were de-ballasting prior to entering port and the possibility of subsequent handling difficulties. Still no sighting of conclusions from several inquiries that have taken place. Meanwhile at any given time there will be up to 80 carriers waiting off-shore from Newcastle and that will certainly not be the last that we will see of similar weather that nearly brought us an ecological catastrophe.”
Of particular interest to me is the rudder. I agree with Newcastle in thinking it will serve as a good reminder and give the tourists something to look at. I also wonder if the ship will suffer the same penalty as the Exxon Valdez; banishment to foreign service through no fault of her own.
If you are new to this story check out our photo slideshow of the incident.