The worst maritime disaster in New Zealand’s history came to a legal conclusion on Monday, nearly a year after the accident.
Daina Shipping Co., owner of the 774-foot cargo ship Rena, which ran aground on a reef on Oct. 5, 2011, will pay $27.6 million ($23 million in U.S. currency) to settle the claims of the government and several public bodies, including Maritime New Zealand.
The settlement fee could rise to $38 million if the company gains resource consent to leave part of the wreck in place at the reef.
The New Zealand government has paid about $47 million so far for the Rena salvage and cleanup operation.
The Rena’s stern section separated Jan. 7 in heavy seas, leaving the incident to be considered New Zealand's worst maritime environmental disaster.