Japanese ship leaks 50 tons of crude oil into Thai gulf

About 50 tons of crude oil spilled into the Gulf of Thailand from a Japan-registered ship on Sunday as it attempted to dispense some of its cargo at a refinery buoy, a company official said.

The Ryaho Maru had moored to unload oil from the Middle East but it leaked because of faulty equipment, said a refinery relations manager from Thai Oil PLC, who spoke on condition of anonymity, citing company policy.

"It failed because of an equipment failure. The dock hose might have leaked," said the manager, adding that there would be an investigation.

The company has cleaned up most of the oil, using a spray to disperse the remainder, he said.

The oil spill occurred off the Thai coast about 50 kilometers (30 miles) southeast of Bangkok, AP reported. V.A.