Grounding of cruise ship Caledonian Sky in Indonesia damaged 18,900 sq m of the coral reef

Raja Ampat reef damageThe grounding of cruise ship Caledonian Sky at shoal in Raja Ampat in Indonesia caused damage of about 18,900 sq m of the coral reef, which is one of the most biodiverse marine habitats and favorite spot for travelers and divers, due to its palm-fringed islands, coral and fish. The passenger vessel smashed on the coral reef around Kri Island in beginning of March 2017 during a bird-watching expedition. The grounding of the luxury cruise ship was reported to local authorities and several failed attempts for refloating cause additional damage to the corals. During the accident there were no reported leaks and pollution, but the environmental impact to the area is sufficient.

According to the preliminary information and assessment led by a local university, which was made shortly after the accident occurred, the damages from the grounding of cruise ship Caledonian Sky on March 4 damaged 13,500 sq m of the coral reef. The newest survey made by government and involving marine researchers and the insurers, which was quite more precise, showed that 18,882 sq m of the corals in Raja Ampat reef were affected.

The Indonesian government is still calculating the financial impact of the accident, but according local residents the tourism industry will be seriously hurt. The state authorities will release final calculation is early April and the company and the insurers are committed to paying compensation.

The cruise ship Caledonian Sky ran aground during low tide in reef shoal off Kri Island in beginning of March. During the accident there were no injuries mong the 102 passengers and 79 crew members. At the scene were sent salvage tugs trying to refloat the passenger vessel but without success. Later at high tide, the cruise ship was towed to safe depth and anchored nearby for special survey. During grounding there was no water pollution but large area of the coral reef was significantly damaged.