Shipwrecks have been left abandoned on the bank of a river in Nha Trang City, Khanh Hoa Province, south-central Vietnam for years, causing environmental pollution there.
Nguyen Thi Ha, 49, living near the bank of the Tac River in Nha Trang, said, “These wrecks have been lying here for a long time but they have yet to be salvaged and handled. Planks and plastic panels from the ships float on the water, causing pollution.”
Most of the broken ships there were salvaged after sinking at sea, Tran Hoc, a 45-year-old fisherman, affirmed.
The ship owners left them there as it costs nearly VND100 million (US$4,118) to repair each of such ships.
“We can clean up garbage ashore but these ships are their assets. Many ship owners have even traveled to other places to earn their living and we could not contact them,” Hoc explained.
|These shipwrecks are left abandoned by their owners. Photo: Minh Chien / Tuoi Tre|
These wrecks have been left on the riverbank for nearly a decade, said Bui Cao Phap, vice-chairman of the People’s Committee of Phuoc Dong Commune in Nha Trang City.
The commune has yet to receive directions from the administration of Nha Trang City to handle the wrecks.
The Nha Trang public service management board is responsible for cleaning up the riverbank, Phap informed.
Meanwhile, director of the board Nguyen Thi Hong Sam said the board takes charge of collecting garbage on the riverbank, not tidying up wrecks.
Luu Thanh Nhan, vice-chairman of the Nha Trang People’s Committee, said the city had been informed of the issue and would soon check the site as well as call for proposals to deal with the wrecks.
The owners of such broken ships are responsible for repairing them, according to Vo Thien Lang, vice-chairman of the Vietnam Fisheries Society.
The central government has issued policies to support fishermen in easing the consequences of natural disasters at sea but there is no regulation on assistance for them in case of incidents caused by themselves.
Management units should tighten control over ship owners and urge them to repair broken vessels, Lang added.
|A shipwreck has decayed. Photo: Minh Chien / Tuoi Tre|
Pursuant to Government Decree 05/2017/ND-CP on dealing with assets sunk in inland waterways, port waters, and territorial waters of Vietnam, the asset owners shall take responsibility for bringing them ashore and covering all related costs.
If the owners fail to do the job, designated agencies have the right to salvage the wrecked properties.