The Strait Times – Toxic ship bound for Bangladesh’s Chittagong

16 September 2011 - A highly toxic Chinese ship, detected with at least ’79 deficiencies since 2010′ at different ports, is now on its way to a ship-breaking yard in Chittagong for dismantling.

The Asia Union, formerly known as MV Humber and MV Cast Otter, is due to enter Bangladesh maritime boundary any time on Saturday, said sources in international maritime watchdogs.

The Chinese ship is reportedly possessing hazardous substances including asbestos, polychlorinated biphenyl, toxic paints and chemical residues that have a wide range of adverse effects on humans, wildlife and the environment. If dismantled, the ship would expose workers and the environment to hazards.

The Department of Environment (DoE) in Chittagong has alerted the port authority and the coast guards about the hazardous ship and urged them not to allow it enter the country for dismantling, said Mr Tajminur Rahman, senior assistant director of the DoE.