On March 14th, a Senate inquiry about the oil spill caused by the sunk tanker MT Princess Empress was held in Philippines, revealing that the vessel did not have permission to sail.
The ship, owned by Manila-based RDC Reield Marine Services, did not have a permit to operate, according to Hernani Fabia, administrator of the country’s Maritime Industry Authority (Marina). The vessel had no authority to operate in the form of an amendment to its Certificate of Public Convenience (CPC) issued to RDC Reield Marine Services (RDC).
A CPC is a MARINA license that allows domestic ship operators to engage in domestic shipping activities. When a company acquires a new ship, it must amend its CPC. The ship had traveled on nine previous voyages without the proper documentation.
RDC Reield Marine Services officials admitted that the MT Princess Empress was able to sail nine times before sinking on February 28th. During the hearing, the Office of Civil Defense stated that 122 people have become ill as a result of the oil spill.
At the same time, sources claim that local authorities of Philippines are considering suing the company for the damage the tanker has caused to people and the environment.
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