578 - 5/08 - Sewage Water Fines - Batumi, Georgia
The Association has been advised of a recent incident in Batumi where a Member has been fined GEL 65,218 (US$ 44,978) for infringement of Georgian Regulations in relation to the discharge of treated sewage.
Two pollution inspectors from the Georgian Environment Department boarded the ship to check the IOPP Certificate, ISPP (Sewage Certificate), Oil Record book Part 1, Garbage storage area, Ballast water reporting form, density of one ballast tank, the soundings of the ER tanks, and the sewage plant, taking samples from the final output stage of the latter.
After two hours with seven coastguard officers and four Pollution Control Department Officials on board, the master was advised that the sewage sample had not passed the test as per Georgian regulations.
After several further hours of investigation and statement taking, the master was issued with a document stating that the ship was detained pending payment of a regulatory fine of approx GEL 65,000.
During this time the ship's sewage overboard discharge valve was closed and sealed by the authorities. There was no other arrangement for dealing with generated treated waste and there was no facility available to receive the sewage water in Batumi.
On the following day the matter was taken before the local court and a fine issued officially in the amount GEL 65,218 (US$ 44,978). The matter is being investigated, but the crew report the sewage plant is fully approved by the ship's flag state and is in good working order.
Members should not hesitate to contact the Club's correspondent should they find themselves in a similar situation in this port.
Source of information: Michael Bowen
Senior Claims Director, Area Group L4
Tel: +44 20 7204 2114