according the International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation (ITOPF). The average number of spills greater than, or equal to, 7 tonnes in size has continuously reduced and, since 2010, averages around seven per year. For ‘large spills’, of greater than 700 tonnes, the yearly average, which was around 25 in the 1970s has reduced dramatically to less than two since 2010.
In 2017, two tanker incidents resulting in spills of over 700 tonnes were reported. The first occurred in the Indian Ocean and the second, which ITOPF attended on site, occurred in the Aegean Sea. Four medium sized spills (7-700 tonnes) were also recorded in 2017.
The estimated total amount of oil lost to the environment through tanker incidents in 2017 was approximately 7,000 tonnes, the majority of which can be attributed to the two large incidents.
However 2018 started badly. On 6 January the Iranian-owned,164,154 dwt Panamanian-flag tanker Sanchi was in collision with the bulk carrier CF Crystal in the East China Sea. The Sanchi caught fire and sank 10 days later, leaving four separate slicks covering an area 39 square miles. All of her 32 crew were