On Thursday 1 November Broads Authority Rangers took part in an oil spill drill at Richardson’s Boat Yard. It was an opportunity for members of staff to reinforce their knowledge of their oil spill contingency plan which is approved by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency counter pollution section.
The plan sets out procedures for dealing with oil spills, a vital part of which is a physical exercise participated in every three years.
The exercise involved two tier-two responders from AMBIPAR Response Ltd (formerly known as Breamar Howells) who would be involved in an instance when a spill is too extensive for Broads Authority members of staff to manage. These tier-two responders have a large equipment holding and have extensive experience of oil spills and the knowledge of how best to recover spilled products.
The exercises, which were led by AMBIPAR Response Ltd, allowed Broads Authority Rangers to handle some of the ancillary and recovery equipment which would be deployed by the tier-two responders in a real-life oil spill situation. They were set challenges to erect pieces of equipment in the quickest times possible as well as learning how kit might behave in different oil spill scenarios.
Steve Birtles, Head of Safety Management at the Broads Authority said,
“The oil spill exercise is all about ensuring that in the event of an oil spill in the National Park, the Broads Authority would be fully equipped with the experience they need to handle the situation to the best possible outcome. This exercise is all about reinforcing our staff’s experience, training and resource to deal with the spill so as to minimise the effect on the environment. We have carried out this practise scenario in different locations on numerous occasions, so that should the worst happen Broads Authority staff will be swift in their response.”
Lucy Burchnall, Head of Rangers said,
“This has been a great opportunity for the Rangers to practise our protocol for dealing with oil spills. Our Ranger teams are likely to be the first people on the scene if such an event was to occur on the Broads so it’s important that they know how to handle a situation until the tier-two responders arrive and when they do how to assist if needed.”
Monday 5 November 2018