Trinidad and Tobago is facing a major crisis due to an oil spill caused by a mysterious ship that ran aground last week. The Prime Minister, Keith Rowley, has declared the situation a “national emergency” as efforts to bring the oil spill under control have been unsuccessful. The vessel, named Gulfstream, capsized without a distress signal and with no known crew members or clear owner, resulting in a significant spill that has affected nearly 10 miles of coastline, reaching the village of Lambeau on Tobago island.
Cleanup and recovery efforts have been hindered by the inability to stop the leak, despite the involvement of hundreds of volunteers. The ship, suspected of being involved in illegal activities, remains shrouded in mystery, and divers are searching for additional markers to identify it. The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Management and the Trinidad and Tobago Defense Force are providing equipment and assistance for the cleanup and containment efforts.
The oil spill has dealt a blow to the country’s tourism industry, as it coincides with the peak of Carnival, a critical time of year. Despite ongoing investigations, the origins and contents of the ship remain unknown, adding to the complexity of the situation.