Crude oil carrier Mont awaits clearance to dock at Alang

Crude oil carrier Mont, which is likely to become the largest ship ever to be scrapped at the Alang Ship-breaking Yard, is yet to get clearance from various state authorities, Gujarat Maritime Board officials said on Friday.

Mont, originally known as Knock Nevis when it was built in 1979 in Norway, is likely to reach Alang on Sunday.

"Mont is yet to get mandatory clearances from the authorities here. After it arrives, first it would be inspected by the Customs Department officers," said GMB port officer in Alang C M Rathod.

He said after Customs, the ship would be inspected by officials of the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB), for hazardous substances and AERB (Atomic Energy Regulatory Board) for radioactive substances.

Rathod said this would be the biggest vessel to be scrapped in Alang. He said going by the size of the ship it would take nearly a year to scrap it.

GPCB regional officer G V Patel also confirmed that Mont is yet to be given clearance to dock at Alang. The vessel is slated to arrive at plot V1 owned by Sanjay Mehta of the Priya Blue Industries Pvt Ltd.

The ship, which has a capacity of 5.65 lakh metric tonnes dead weight (DWT), an overall length of 458.45 metres and a draft of 24.6 m, is valued at Rs 125 crore.It weighs over two lakh tonnes.

As a crude oil tanker, the vessel was known as the Seawise Giant, Happy Giant, and Jahre Viking, before being renamed Mont recently.

The vessel was damaged during the Iran-Iraq war in 1986, but was relaunched in 1991.

In 2008-09, 264 ships were dismantled at Alang, which is almost double the number of ships dismantled the previous year.

According to GMB, 136 ships were dismantled in 2006-07 and an equal number of ships in 2007-08 at Alang. Also, till November 2009, 214 ships have already been dismantled at the Asia's largest ship-breaking yard.

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