The construction gravel dumped by the Vietnamese cargo ship, which ran aground in Fuvahmulah island, has begun to wash ashore causing damage to the western coast of the island.
MV NGOC Son ran aground on the reef to the south of Fuvahmulah while carrying water and sewerage material to the island for Sri Lankan contractor Sierra. A Singaporean salvage company had been hired to re-float the vessel which was forced to dump over 5,000 tons of construction sand and gravel to lighten the ship.
The gravel has been washing ashore ever since it was dumped, causing damage to the beach.
Fuvahmulah Atoll Council's chair Falah Shareef said that the citizens have been expressing concerns ever since the dumping began. The Environment Protection Agency (EPA) had also previously requested to clean up the gravel, said Falah.
EPA’s Director General Ibrahim Naeem responded to the issue that they have requested the local agent of the vessel multiple times to clean up the gravel. The agent company’s chair Ahmed Maumoon said they have given the project to local company BMS.
“We have received a proposal from the company as well. The work will hopefully commence soon,” said Naeem.