The oil slick covering several boats belonging to fishermen from the Fullarton Fishing Association, on Friday morning. Image courtesy Shankar Teelucksingh, Councillor for Cedros.

RADHICA DE SILVA
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Over 20 fishermen from Fullarton Village in Cedros could not go out to fish on Friday morning, after floating chunks of oil contaminated their anchor ropes and boats.

Luckily, their nets were not affected.

Fisherman Rakesh Ramdass told Guardian Media he made the discovery when he woke up before dawn and went to float his boat.

He said he was horrified to see the mass of oil on the shore, and on the sides of all the boats anchored on the beach.

“This is really frustrating. We do not know where the oil is coming from, but we are losing a day of work, ” he said.

Treasurer of the Fullarton Fishing Association, Sherwin Lawrence, said they wanted an immediate investigation as to where the oil was coming from.

“Right now, we are afraid to go out there because we do not know what we will need. If we go out and meet up oil, it will affect our nets and that will be a great loss, ” he said.

He said this was not the first oil spill faced by fishermen, noting that Heritage Petroleum should compensate the fishermen.

Councillor for the area, Shankar Teelucksingh, said there was a possibility that the oil could have been washed down because of heavy rains and floods from the higher Guapo regions.

He also called on the authorities to investigate the source of the oil.

Guardian Media will bring you more as this story unfolds.