Wakashio Captain’s ‘Wifi’ Story In Doubt Following New Revelations In Mauritius Oil Spill Case

The Indian Ocean island of Mauritius is still reeling from the devastating oil spill caused by the Panama-flagged, Japanese-owned vessel, The Wakashio. More questions are now being asked about the cause of the incident as the original claims start to unravel.

The first day that the Panama Maritime Authorities landed in Mauritius on September 8, they claimed that the captain had ordered a change of course to “find internet or a telephone signal.” 

While this captured many headlines, most in Mauritius were doubtful about this account, given that internet connectivity was easily available even 12 nautical miles off shore, where most vessels on the busy shipping lanes pass by the island.

Many tourists who travel to Mauritius (around 1 million a year), are able to access the internet many miles offshore on catamarans to share photos of themselves on several of the dolphin and whale watching tours or visits to the outlying islands of Mauritius.

Free, unlimited satellite internet available on ship

Such a story about the ‘search for Wi-Fi’ now appears to be even less credible given a statement from Wakashio operator, Mitsui OSK Lines to Forbes this week, that revealed that all crew on Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) vessels have access to unlimited, free satellite internet while on board and at sea.

This means there was no need to be searching for any coastal internet connectivity or telephone signals, given this was a MOL-operated vessel.

In a statement to Forbes on October 6, a spokesperson for MOL said “Our fleet has the most