Major Norway disaster exercise underway / News / The Foreigner

Major Norway disaster exercise underway. Nordic and international authorities are conducting a major simulation in the Oslo Fjord to test readiness in case of a shipping disaster. “SkagEX11” is a joint exercise involving Norwegian, Swedish, and Danish civil protection authorities and the EU’s Monitoring and Information Centre (EU MIC) expert team, to test cooperation in the event of a major ship disaster in the Skagerrak basin. The scenario starts with a fire in the engine room of Color Line’s MS "Bohus” passenger ferry between Strömstad and Sandefjord, subsequently colliding with the oil tanker “Oslotank”, causing a massive oil spill near the Ytre Hvaler National Park.

skagex11, norwegiandirectorateforcivilprotectionandemergencyplanning



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Major Norway disaster exercise underway

Published on Wednesday, 7th September, 2011 at 12:49 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 7th September 2011 at 15:37.

Nordic and international authorities are conducting a major simulation in the Oslo Fjord to test readiness in case of a shipping disaster.

Rescue crew on board MS 'Bohus'
Rescue crew on board MS 'Bohus'
Photo: DSB


“SkagEX11” is a joint exercise involving Norwegian, Swedish, and Danish civil protection authorities and the EU’s Monitoring and Information Centre (EU MIC) expert team, to test cooperation in the event of a major ship disaster in the Skagerrak basin.

The scenario starts with a fire in the engine room of Color Line’s MS "Bohus” passenger ferry between Strömstad and Sandefjord, subsequently colliding with the oil tanker “Oslotank”, causing a massive oil spill near the Ytre Hvaler National Park.

Ytre Hvaler is Norway’s only marine life preservation area, with a rich underwater ecosystem containing corals and kelp forest, and land areas with a varied plant and animal life. The park was the scene of February’s accident involving the Icelandic container ship “Godafoss”, which grounded in relatively calm seas, causing an oil slick that spread to the Agder coastline.

Norway’s Directorate for Civil Protection and Emergency Planning (DSB), responsible for organising and carrying out the operation, says, the simulation “creates a scenario with two distressed ships that must be dealt with simultaneously. The situation calls for firefighting, evacuation, and search and rescue (SAR) at the accident site”

MS "Bohus’” passengers will be airlifted to several locations with reception centres on both sides of the Oslo Fjord. Casualties sent by air to Sweden will be transported for further treatment in local hospitals and other medical facilities.

DSB Project Leader Per Øyvind Semb tells NRK, “the Coastguard will be alerted and arrive with its vessels to help clean up the oil by using popcorn.”

In addition to firefighting and rescue teams from all the Nordic countries except Iceland, the operation also involves Scandinavian pollution response efforts, embassies, government agencies and ministries, local municipalities, and certain volunteer organisations.

MS 'Bohus'
MS 'Bohus'
Color Line/Flickr
According to the DSB, “The Skagerrak basin is among the busiest waters in Northern Europe, with significant shipping traffic consisting of fishing vessels, cargo ships, passenger ships and a substantial leisure fleet. This year alone, Oslo is port of call for almost 180 large cruise ships in addition to the normal daily schedule of large ferries that sail these waters north - south, or east - west. There is also a large oil refinery at Slagentangen that is port of call to large oil tankers on a daily basis.

Approximately 3,000 are involved in the operation, which ends tomorrow with an evaluation and follow-up. It is reportedly the largest catastrophe exercise in Norway ever.

To read about the exercise, click here (external link).



Published on Wednesday, 7th September, 2011 at 12:49 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 7th September 2011 at 15:37.

This post has the following tags: skagex11, norwegiandirectorateforcivilprotectionandemergencyplanning.





  
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