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Aitutaki faces fuel shortage

Monday 1 March 2010 | Published in Regional

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The island of Aitutaki could face fuel and cooking gas shortages after the cargo ship Southern Phoenix returned to New Zealand on Saturday carrying cargo for the island.

The Southern Phoenix had spent a week sitting outside the reef in Aitutaki with rough seas hampering attempts to offload the ship.

Aitutaki mayor Tai Herman said yesterday that their real concern is that they are not too sure as to what cargo remains on the ship.

“I know that one company on the island has run out of cooking gas which is on the ship along with some fuel,” said Herman.

Herman said that building materials for the island’s recovery programme were also on board the ship – but he didn’t know exactly how much of what supply remained on the ship.

Just 15 of the 30 containers for Aitutaki were offloaded last Monday.

Meanwhile Herman says that the island and her people were not affected by the effects of the tsunami or the now downgraded cyclone Sarah.