A council team is this morning inspecting the Tauranga Harbour after hydraulic oil spilled into the Sulphur Point area yesterday.

Bay of Plenty Regional Council regulatory compliance manager Stephen Mellor said the team left the site just before dark and by that point, the majority of the oil had been recovered by the sucker truck.

He said the holding pond had also been sufficiently lowered so it could no longer enter the harbour.

Council staff working to retrieve oil from the harbour. Photo / George Novak
Council staff working to retrieve oil from the harbour. Photo / George Novak

Yesterday morning, it was reported that hydraulic oil had spilled into the Sulphur Point area of Tauranga Harbour.

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It was understood that a failed hydraulic hose for a straddle lift operating at the container terminal was the cause.

The sucker truck remained on-site throughout the night to recover any residue flushed out through the system and absorbent booms were left in place, he said.

Council staff working to retrieve oil from the harbour. Photo / George Novak
Council staff working to retrieve oil from the harbour. Photo / George Novak

"We've had staff onsite this morning inspecting the stormwater drain and only a slight oily sheen can be seen within the contained area behind the booms."

The incident was being investigated by the council and due to this investigation, they were unable to provide an estimate of the volume of oil spilled, he said.

He said there had been no reports of impacted marine life but even diluted oily discharges could be harmful to marine and sea life.