X-Press Pearl disaster: insurer agrees to pay additional $ 2.5 million

The insurer of the sunken vessel X-Press Pearl has agreed to pay an additional $ 2.5 million for the claims presented and the sum is expected in a few days, the president of the Marine Environment Protection Authority said ( MEPA), Dharshani Lahandapura.

Speaking to the Daily News yesterday, she said the above payment was for expenses incurred by MEPA, the National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA) and a few other institutions to clean up the maritime area. polluted and the coastal belt from June 3. to August 31.

“Our claims for this period totaled $ 3.9 million, but the insurer had only given approval for $ 2.5 million, adding that more documents are needed to prove the rest,” he said. she declared.

Previously, an insurance payment of US $ 3.6 million had been received for the initial expenses incurred in dealing with the vessel’s fire and pollution caused by it. Lahandapura said the insurance company has also responded positively to claims made by the fisheries department for direct and indirect damage suffered by fishermen, and that the fishermen will also be given the green light shortly.

The MEPA chief said the third claim for expenses incurred from September 1 to November 30 was being prepared and the MEPA would continue to seek damages until the shipwreck was cleared.

“This is all about economic damage, not environmental damage. Environmental damage cannot be calculated overnight. A group of experts, co-chaired by Professor Ajith de Alwis of the University of Moratuwa and Professor Prashanthi Gunawardene of the University of Sri Jayawardhanapura, produced the first interim report in this regard. It was forwarded to an Australian maritime law firm for comment as directed by the Attorney General. We hope to follow up on the environmental damage claim before the end of this year, ”she explained.