Port authorities told to remove wrecked ships

In a bid to make key ports safer for shipping, the government yesterday asked harbor masters for a timetable of their plans to remove wrecks and abandoned hulks. Merchant Marine Minister Manolis Kefaloyiannis issued a directive to Piraeus and Elefsina port authorities requesting that they supply him with details of the sunken and abandoned ships that are dangerous to shipping in their harbors and surrounding areas, as well as around the ports of Salamina, Perama and Keratsini. Kefaloyiannis wants to know when these ships will go, and whether he needs to pass a new law to make the process easier and faster. «Our aim is to clean up the ports by having all shipwrecks removed so that the danger caused by them can be nullified and vital space can be freed up,» read the ministry’s statement. Some 85 hulks have been removed so far from the Salamina area.