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Floating storage unit at risk of sinking off Venezuela

A PDVSA-operated very large crude carrier being used for floating storage was reported to be in danger of sinking in the Gulf of Paria off Venezuela.
According to Lloyd’s List Intelligence, the vessel is in a very poor condition. It is reported to be listing, with the lower deck equipment under three metres of water.
The 207,700 dwt, 2005-built FSO Nabarima (IMO: 9316567) has approximately 1.3m barrels of oil on board and is in danger of sinking, Lloyd’s List Intelligence reported.
On Monday, it cited reports from workers saying water levels inside the engine room and other compartments are up to 1.5 m deep. The possibility of the vessel navigating on its own to a terminal is currently considered unlikely.
The report added that parts of the vessel, including water pumps and offloading systems, had been damaged owing to improper handling by unskilled workers hired to fill crewing shortages.
The Venezuela-flagged vessel is owned by ConocoPhillips and operated by sanctioned Venezuela national oil company PDVSA.
The vessel was previously insured by Gard and classed under ABS but these appear to have lapsed.
The El Palito oil refinery, also operated by PDVSA, leaked oil onto beaches and nature reserves after an incident in late July. The risk of an environmental disaster from a spill from the floating storage unit has been previously highlighted.
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