Ships sunk in the Baltic Sea during both world wars are ticking bombs threatening Estonian waters, ERR TV reported.
More and more fuel leaks are to be expected over time, the Estonian TV station warned. Ivar Treffner, a researcher from the Estonian Maritime Museum, noted that the exact number of wrecks sunk in Estonian waters is not known.poster
There are dozens of known environmentally hazardous wrecks. These are ships that have already used liquid fuels rather than coal or sail, he pointed out.
The navy is responsible for pollution control in Estonian waters. Mati Kose, the navy’s chief pollution control officer, said that many of the wrecks date back to the First and Second World Wars.
Due to their age, there is a risk of damage or collapse of the hulls or ship structures, which can also lead to oil spills and marine pollution, he noted. – It cannot be ruled out that in their case, at some point oil spills into the sea could increase dramatically, he warned.
Kose acknowledged that the navy is primarily responding to pollution reports, but is gradually trying to be more proactive and identify wrecks at risk of spills.