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Rescue team on OSR, relevant equipment

Accidental oil spills cannot be avoided in any country which performs relevant works and even has strict ecological requirements.

The world’s practice shows that even having sufficient technical base it is not possible to eliminate all the consequences of oil spills and avoid damage to the environment.

In this regard the main purpose of the countries of the Arctic region is to provide the sustainable system on prevention of accidental oil spills and minimize the risks of consequences from the oil spills offshore and onshore.

At the moment in the countries of the Arctic region oil spill response readiness onshore and offshore is supported on the state and private levels.

The state level of oil spill response in the Arctic zone of the RF is provided by the Federal Budgetary Institution “Marine Rescue Service of Rosmorrechflot”.

The private level of oil spill response in the Arctic zone of the RF is provided by the professional emergency rescue teams such as” EcoService” and “Arcticspecservice”.

In the Norwegian part of the Arctic region there are forces and resources on oil spill response provided on the state, private and municipal levels.

The response on the state level is performed by the forces of the Norwegian Coastal Administration. The private level of response is represented by the Norwegian Association of Industrialists NOFO which is financed by the organizations that are a part of this Association. Municipal and inter-municipal response is provided by the forces of Inter-municipal organization on oil spill control (IUA). Each level of response in case of an emergency situation and insufficient forces and resources can get assistance from any other response level.

“EcoService” (www.eco-service.org)

According to the Government Decree of the Murmansk region №148-GD of 04.04.2013 the company “EcoService” is part of forces and resources of permanent readiness of the Murmansk territorial sub-system of the united national system of prevention and elimination of emergency situations.

The main activities of the company are the measures on prevention and elimination of emergency oil spills.


1. Emergency-rescue works:

  • localization and elimination of oil spills;
  • emergency-rescue readiness on hazardous manufacturing sites;
  • organization of prevention measures regarding the pollution of water areas during freight and bunkering operations;
  • tank cleanout with subsequent transportation to the place of disposal of oil sludge.

2. Complex services involving waste disposal caused by the production of oil and gas.

3. Development of documentation in the field of environmental protection and industrial safety.

4. Rehabilitation of contaminated land.

“EcoService” provides their services on the territory of Murmansk region as well as beyond its borders.

Emergency and rescue unit “EcoService” has eliminated more than 20 real oil spills during its working period and has conducted training exercises in more than 40 companies and organizations around the Kola Peninsula.

“EcoService” regularly takes part in the international Russian-Norwegian complex exercises on prevention and OSR.

Forces and resources of “EcoService” are presented in the table of its infrastructure.

Contact information:

Director- Alexander Glazov

Address: Tralovaya 71

183038 Murmansk


Tel: +7 8152 687-006, 687-009

Fax: +7 8152 687-025


Federal Budgetary Institution «Marine Rescue Service of Rosmorrechflot»

The decision on the establishment of the marine rescue service was made on the basis of Decree of the Council of Ministers № 5128-r on 23 August 1956. According to this Decree the performance of salvage and underwater works in the national economy for all civilian agencies was transferred to the Ministry of Navy of the USSR.

MRS organizes and takes an active part in the annual joint international exercises at various levels on all the seas of the Russian Federation.

The system of marine rescue service includes:

  • Federal Budgetary Institution «Marine Rescue Service of Rosmorrechflot» (MRS), a division of which is the State Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (SMRCC);
  • branches of MRS on the sea basins;
  • seven marine rescue coordination centres (MRCC) and six marine rescue coordination sub-centres (MRCSC).

MRS together with its branches and MRCCs / MRCSCs form a functional subsystem of forces and means to respond to emergencies related to the search and rescue of persons in distress, and the oil spill response at sea.

Thus, the system of MRS is a developing state structure, designed to respond to emergencies at sea and a reliable partner for maritime business community.

NOFO (www.nofo.no)

NOFO is the Norwegian Clean Seas Association for Operating Companies which includes 29 companies that deal with hydrocarbon production.

Forces: around 60 people from the contracting organizations. 24-hour OSR duty.

Resources:  the budget of the Association in 2011 was 196 691 NOK, 193 404 NOK of which came from outside funds.

The Association has 5 bases for response on oil spill across the coastal line of Norway including Stavanger, Mongstad, Kristiansund, Sandnessjoen, Hammerfest.

The aim for creation of these bases is to provide the effective OSR along the whole Norwegian coast.

1)      These bases are equipped with the OSR inventory for elimination of any kinds of oil spills that exist on the shelf. Also there are facilities and conditions for repairing the OSR equipment.

2)      The OSR duty is organized by 16 vessels, 8 of which are ships with the NOFO equipment onboard. NOFO meets the new requirements of the Norwegian Marine Directorate regarding certification and organization of exercises on-board the vessels towing booms.

3)      The satellite observation system:  there is an agreement with Kongsberg Satellittjeneste (K-SAT) about the satellite observation on the Norwegian continental shelf (K-SAT gives the information about an oil spills to NOFO within 1 hour after its detection).

4)      There are 18 radars for oil spills detection (Oil Spill Detection Radars). 14 of them are installed onboard of the vessels that are in constant readiness, others are in stock and are sent to the vessels if needed.

5)      There are infrared cameras for stains detection – one on each base. These cameras are used on the vessels (they don’t recognize the iridescent film).

6)      There are 18 marine mechanical skimmers:

7)      There is a large stock of dispersants and agreements for their use from aircrafts.

8)      There are agreements with the state and private individuals about the access to their OSR resources including IUA and the Norwegian Coastal Administration.

9)      There are 11 coastal and 7 marine NOFO systems consisting of:

 Transrec 350 system with a weir skimmer, 400 m of booms, a vessels for collecting oil, a tug boat, a container with repair parts.


The Norwegian Coastal Administration (kystverket.no)

The Norwegian Coastal Administration has 27 warehouses with OSR equipment across the coastal area of Norway. 16 of them are the main warehouses, one if which is located on Spitzbergen (Svalbard).The other 11 warehouses are much smaller. All these warehouses approximately contain:

- 9000 m of light booms;

- 22 000 m of medium booms;

-  12 000 m of heavy booms;

- 130 skimmers;

- 9 systems of response to an emergency situation during the bunkering of oil;

- 4  systems of response to an emergency situations during transportation of oil;

- equipment for the shoreline clean-up;

- 39 vessels are ready to respond to the oil spills across the coastal line of Norway;

- about  20 vessels with the OSR equipment on-board;

- the state system of OSR can involve civil and military ships patrolling the coast into the elimination of emergency situations;

 - participation in the elimination of oil spills offshore using dispersants in case they can minimize the negative impact on the environment.


IUA (Inter-municipal Committees for Acute Pollution):

The organization unites all the municipalities of the country.

The equipment includes:

-          50 warehouses with OSR equipment;

-          2 000 employees;

-          approximately 70 000 m of light booms;

-          300 skimmers stored in municipal and inter-municipal warehouses;

-          the equipment for the elimination of intense chemical contamination is in the possession of large fire-fighting crews or local ports authorities;

-          local vessels.


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