Published on : Saturday, March 11, 2017
Last week, a Bahamian-flagged cruise vessel smashed into one of the most famous coral reefs at Raja Ampat, an Indonesian island chain that shelters probably the richest marine biodiversity of the world was damaged to a great extent last week.
This was during the time when the cruise ship knocked into at a low tide, as per an official report.
The 90-meter Caledonian Sky that was owned by tour operator Noble Caledonia had run aground in an uncharted shoal in the region of West Papua province after it had completed a bird-watching trip in Waigeo Island on 4th March. The British company had elaborated the incident as ‘unfortunate’ and said that it was cooperating completely with all the relevant authorities.
The damage done to the cruise ship was minimal.
And, it had set sail after being questioned by investigators. An official evaluation team found that the ship had been caught in low tide though it was equipped with GPS and radar instruments, as per the team member Ricardo Tapilatu who is the head of the Research Center for Pacific Marine Resources at the University of Papua.
A tugboat from Sorong city had been deployed to help refloat the cruise vessel.
The 4,290-tonne Caledonian Sky that was carrying 102 passengers and 79 crew members had damaged nearly 1,600 square metres of coral at a diving site known as Crossover Reef. It was on board a 16-night journey. The incident has resulted in the widespread destruction of the structural habitat of the ecosystem leading to a loss of biodiversity of about eight coral genera including stylophora, montipora, porites, acropora and so on.