Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Whangarei Harbour ‘oil spill’ tests preparedness

9 April, 2013

Whangarei Harbour ‘oil spill’ tests preparedness

A fictional five-tonne oil slick near the entrance of the Whangarei Harbour has seen Northland’s oil spill response preparations put to the test.

The day-long scenario, run at Northport at Marsden Point recently (subs: 3 April 2013), brought together around 35 trained oil spill responders from as far afield as Taranaki.

With the Marsden Point oil refinery on its doorstep and a high volume of commercial shipping traffic passing through its waters, Northland is one of the main focal points for oil spill response in New Zealand.

“These exercises are a valuable training tool to help build on the considerable oil spill response experience we have here in Northland,” the Northland Regional Council’s Opua-based Regional Harbourmaster Jim Lyle says.

Mr Lyle says many of Northland’s oil spill responders have been involved in major events such as the Rena response in 2011 and even the Gulf of Mexico’s Deepwater Horizon spill of 2010.

The recent oil spill exercise involved trained responders from Northland Regional Council, Refining NZ, Northport Limited, North Tugz, Auckland Council, Taranaki Regional Council and Maritime NZ.

Mr Lyle says that practical exercises – typically run once a year – help regional responders to stay familiar with the range of specialised equipment that may be used during an oil spill.

“We have a large store of specialised Maritime NZ equipment based at Northport for quick access during an oil spill event and there’s a significant amount of equipment just two hours away in Auckland,” says Mr Lyle.

“While in a real event every situation is different, regular hands-on practise with the equipment helps prepare us to respond as efficiently and effectively as possible.

“All of the participants in this oil spill exercise put in a huge effort and contributed to a smooth, efficient and successful operation.”

Mr Lyle says the most recent oil spill exercise made use of the council’s 16 metre pilot boat, the ‘Waikare’, and two of its smaller work-boats, ‘Tai Ao’ and ‘Karetu’.

“All our workboats perform a variety of roles in their ‘day jobs’, but they’re also on-call at all times for oil spill response and recovery.

“The Waikare was specially designed as a multi-purpose boat that – as well as being used for piloting and maintenance of aids to navigation – is able to carry and deploy the heavy equipment used during an oil spill response.“

Mr Lyle says that following the exercise, the Waikare was also used to trial a new piece of Maritime NZ oil spill response equipment, the ‘harbour buster boom’, which will soon be added to the region’s equipment store.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Tomorrow’s Speeches By John Key And
Andrew Little

The Key government has already kicked off the political year on a stridently ideological note, with Environment Minister Nick Smith choosing to lay all manner of sins at the door of the Resource Management Act.

Tomorrow, the government will wheeling out its best salesman – Prime Minister John Key – to sell its plans for state housing, which happens to be another of the government’s most contentious, most ideologically-driven policy packages. Presumably, Key will be trying not to double down on the rhetoric, and thereby leave room for Labour leader Andrew Little to sound like the centrist voice of reason.

Key will have his work cut out, though. More>>

 

Transport: Auckland Looks To Light Rail

The Board of Auckland Transport has called for an investigation into a light rail network, which could relieve traffic congestion on some of the region’s busiest roads. This stems from work in 2012 (the City Centre Future Access study) which responded to a government request to develop a robust and achievable solution for access to the CBD. More>>

ALSO:

RMA: Smith's Claims Don't Match Evidence - Greens

The Motu group’s research into the impacts of planning rules looked at the costs related to housing development but not the benefits of environmental protections and does not recommend significant changes to the RMA to reduce the cost of new house builds. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Similarities Between John Key And David Cameron

For years now, David Cameron has been the closest available thing to a mentor/analogue to our Prime Minister, such that Key watchers could be interested in an analysis of Cameron that appeared in the British press over the Christmas break. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Ian Fletcher Resignation & GCSB’s New Role

It may well be that after being shoulder-tapped in Queensland for the GCSB job, three years of living in Wellington has been enough for Fletcher and his family, given that the pending review of the GCSB would have required an even longer commitment from him. Three years of Wellington’s weather is enough for anyone... More>>

ALSO:

Ian Apperley: $10m Or $100m For New Wellington Council IT System?

I feel a Tui Billboard coming on. I commented the other day that it looked like the Council’s Ninth big project was a potential $100 million plus... The Mayor has responded: “I am reassured by the Chief Executive and by Anthony Wilson that the proposed budget is in the region of $10 million.” More>>

ALSO:

Southern Ocean:
Navy Intercepts Illegal Fishing Vessels

Foreign Minister Murray McCully today put illegal fishing vessels operating in the Southern Ocean on notice and vowed to take action against their owners. “As part of a multi-agency operation, the HMNZS WELLINGTON has intercepted two vessels claiming to be flagged to Equatorial Guinea, fishing illegally in the Southern Ocean.” Mr McCully says. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news