“The tanks of a U.S. Navy warship stuck on a Philippine reef have been pumped full of seawater to keep the vessel stable while salvage ships make their way to the site of the grounding, officials said Monday.
Navy-led salvage teams have also removed most of the materials from the minesweeper USS Guardian that could pose environmental problems for Tubbataha Reef, a Philippine national park andUNESCO World Heritage Site. Those materials include paint, solvents and lubricants, according to a statement from the U.S. Embassy in Manila.
“We continue to place extra scrutiny on removing everything we can to mitigate possible damage to the marine environment,” U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Tom Carney, the on-scene commander of the salvage operation, said in a statement.
All of the 15,000 gallons of diesel fuel aboard the 224-foot-long, 1,312-ton ship were removed Friday, the Navy said.