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Magic of Miyako lies in southern island

Date Posted: 2004-05-20

On the south side of Miyako Island lies an area called Yaebise. It is called the isle of illusion, as it comes to view only once a year, typically in March on the lunar calendar. The remainder of the year Yaebise is under water.

March 12th was the day this year as a Taiwanese fishing boat was stranded at Yaebise, the longline fishing boat stuck for two months because the boat owners didn’t have any accident insurance and nobody wanted to touch it after it was grounded.

The Prefecture has been asking Taiwan to pay to have the boat removed, and Taiwan has finally agreed. Work began May 8th.

The 11th Maritime Safety Agency says there is now a Taiwanese ship on site, together with four crew members. The question is, how much damage has been caused. Large drums will be used to float the boat up and off the reef.

The recovery project has begun with locating the float drums inside the boat engine room, and along the bottom. When everything is ready, air will be pumped into the drums, letting the boat float up to the surface.

Prefecture and local fisherman’s association representatives have been warning Taiwan that “this stranded boat has a big crack in front of the boat, and if you let it stay there a long time, the oil pollution will be coming out.” They are asking for rapid removal.

Once the Chinese-Okinawan Cultural and Economic Exchange Association in Naha became involved, the removal operation began.

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