Traces of phosphine gas located on board MSC Chitra: DGS

The DGS said that traces of phosphine gas were detected on board the ship MSC Chitra by the salvage team, indicating the possibility of containers carrying aluminium phosphide having fallen in the hold of the vessel.

Updated: Aug 19, 2010, 00:34 AM IST

Mumbai: The Directorate General of Shipping
(DGS) today said that traces of phosphine gas were detected on
board the ship MSC Chitra by the salvage team, indicating the
possibility of containers carrying aluminium phosphide having
fallen in the hold of the vessel.

However, measurements of air sample in the vicinity of
MSC Chitra have not indicated any phosphine level. The
position is being monitored regularly, a press statement said.

Meanwhile, 300 canisters containing aluminium phosphide
and diachlorophost have been found and collected from the
Alibaug region. There are also reports of several other
canisters being sighted on the coast off INS Kunjali, it said.

Today, the Navy has escorted 12 vessels out from Mumbai
Port Trust (MbPT) and five vessels out from Jawaharlal Nehru
Port Trust (JNPT), while 14 vessels for MbPT and 8 vessels for
JNPT were piloted in. This brings the cumulative number of
vessels piloted out to 80 and cumulative vessels brought in to
93, the DGS statement said.

A total of 293 containers have fallen overboard so far,
of which 10 have been found sunk and marked. 77 containers are
reported beached, 14 containers retrieved by floating cranes
and 18 containers transported ashore at JNPT.

No fresh container has been sighted in the navigation
channel, the statement said.

The state government`s concern on this issue arises out
of the start of passenger ferry services from September 1 and
the overall ferry boat movement before the festive season from
September 10-20, the statement said.

PTI