Improving response capabilities through drills and exercises

Lamor is currently delivering a 3-year agreement for the National Center for Environmental Compliance (NCEC) in Saudi Arabia to strengthen the Oil Spill Response capabilities in the Red Sea Area.

The aim of the project is to establish the equipment and resource capability to respond to oil spill incidents in the area. For further details about the agreement, please see the news article about the Lamor and NCEC agreement.

The Red Sea is one of the world’s busiest sea routes and the coastline has absolutely pristine environments that could suffer irreparable damage in case of a major oil spill. Increasing Saudi Arabia’s ability to respond to incidents is a key mission of NCEC and the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture.

During the first months of operations, a significant amount of equipment, maritime assets, and personnel have been mobilized to the region. In addition to the dedicated full-time oil spill response personnel, more than 300 people have participated in basic Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response, and Cooperation (OPRC) training courses facilitated by Lamor.

As part of Saudi Arabia’s objectives to establish a stronger capability to face environmental incidents, frequent drills and exercises are held.Screenshot 2022-01-10 at 12.14.52 During autumn 2021, Lamor participated with three Oil Spill Response vessels and personnel in national exercise no. 4 in the south area of the Red Sea and a similar national exercise no. 5 was conducted in the central area of the Red Sea, in the waters of Jeddah.

Most recently, in late December, Lamor participated through its services for the NCEC in the "Search and Rescue 43" exercise organized by the Saudi Coast Guard in the waters of Rabigh. The exercise simulated evacuation operations from an aircraft emergency landing in shallow water.

The role of NCEC and Lamor was to establish containment of a possible oil spill in the surroundings. Three, 60-meter vessels from the Lamor fleet participated in the exercise with industry experts onboard to perform oil spill response operations and firefighting support using the vessels' firefighting capabilities with 1650 m3/h capacity. With one vessel on firefighting duty, a sister vessel performed oil dispersant operations, and the third vessel deployed oil booms to contain and collect potential oil spills. The NCEC and Lamor shoreside crew deployed 250m of calm water boom to protect the shoreline areas.

All operations were performed without injuries or near-miss incidents.

"Running regular exercises is a very important element of knowledge transfer and making sure response personnel are familiar with various scenarios and routines. It allows the various parties to practice their interaction and communication for seamless cooperation", said Ilias Pavlidis, Project Manager for Lamor.

Screenshot 2022-01-10 at 12.14.40Lamor’s service agreement with NCEC runs until mid-2024 and continues to support the center’s efforts to establish and enhance the environmental services capabilities in the Red Sea area. The Red Sea area has many pristine ecosystems and with several large projects to develop Saudi Arabia’s tourism sector, focus on environmental protection is paramount.

"The investments and efforts being taken by NCEC to enhance the Oil Spill Response capabilities in the Red Sea region are significant on a global scale. This is a clear testimony to Saudi Arabia’s commitment to environmental protection,” said Captain Vince Mitchell of Lamor.

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