Written by Pavani Hapuarachchi
27 May, 2021 | 10:14 am
COLOMBO (News 1st): The Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA) on Thursday (May 27) instructed people who collected debris that washed ashore from the burning X-PRESS PEARL, to immediately seek medical treatment if any allergic reactions appear.
“The debris from X-PRESS PEARL could pose serious risks to health, with allergic reactions including skin conditions, breathing difficulties and other long-term health concerns as well, given that there is limited knowledge on the content of the chemicals aboard the vessel,” Dr. Turney Pradeep Kumara, the General Manager of the Marine Environment Protection Authority stressed.
Therefore, Dr. Turney Pradeep Kumara STERNLY advised the people to seek medical attention without concealing the truth.
Numerous warnings were issued urging the people NOT to come in contact with the debris from the vessel, as the burnt content could be toxic and hazardous to humans, he noted.
Thereby, the people were requested to refrain from visiting the coastal areas where the debris had washed ashore and inform the authorities to ensure the safe removal of the content.
“However, despite the warnings, certain people had resorted to visiting the affected beaches and collecting debris, at times accompanied by children as well,” Dr. Turney Pradeep Kumara lamented.
On the same note, Sri Lanka Police on Wednesday (May 26) arrested EIGHT (08) people for collecting debris from the burning MV X-PRESS PEARL in violation of the quarantine laws.
“The items discarded from the ship that was collected by the people are harmful to the human body; therefore, if a person had collected such items, he/she had committed an offense under the Penal Code,” Police Spokesperson DIG Ajith Rohana pointed out.
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