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New Port Norms unveiled by Tamil Nadu government

In the light of a major oil spill which affected the entire Chennai coast following a collision of an oil tanker near the entrance of Kamarajar port Ennore a few months ago, Tamil nadu government has introduced certain restrictions on handling of petroleum products in its seventeen minor ports under its control.

A Tamil Nadu government order issued on July 26 has laid down regulations for ships using the minor ports in the state. The 17 minor ports many of them of being captive ports handling hazardous chemicals are administered by the Tamil Nadu Maritime board.

Handling of Petroleum products and chemical tankers will be allowed only during fair season. Approval of the Port Officer becomes conditional under foul weather.

This regulation meant that some restrictions will be imposed on handling this cargo during the monsoon months from October to December every year. The state along with Andhra Pradesh gets their quota of rains during the North East monsoon.

Under the new regulations to be enforced by the state government the operation of petroleum products and chemical tankers will be restricted to day light hours only from 6 am to 6 pm. The entire discharge operations will be under continuous supervision of a Marine Terminal Operation Contractor the order said.

Liquified Petroleum Gas vessels will be anchored in designated explosive dangerous anchorage only which meant specific spots near the minor port where even if an accident took place there will be minimal damage.

The government order also stipulated that the ship owner or his agent should inform the concerned port officer about the expected date and time of the arrival of the ship at the port at least one week in advance.


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