Oil spill response course held in Bermuda

An oil spill response course funded through the Conflict Stability and Security Fund, administered by the Maritime & Coastguard Agency has brought together people with responsibility for coastlines from right across the Overseas Territories.

The three day course was hosted by Bermuda and involved training in shoreline clean-up and assessment techniques in the event of an oil spill.

Expert Dr Edward Owens led the course which brought together 17 people from Bermuda and eight from other Overseas Territories. He has provided technical support on shoreline oil spill response operations since 1970 and assisted with 39 major spills including the Exxon Valdez and the more recent Deepwater Horizon Well blowout.

Home affairs minister Walter Roban said: “The focus of this course will be how to address the clean-up of different types of fuel and oils once they have bypassed protection booms and have reached various coastline areas.

“This includes mangroves, exposed corals and seagrass in addition to sandy beaches and a range of man-made structures including marinas.”

Alison Leighton, who manages the CSSF work for the Maritime & Coastguard Agency said: ‘We know that our Overseas Territories contain some of the most beautiful but fragile coastline. These courses, which are funded by the UK Government, are vital if we are to make sure everyone is equipped to deal with the worst if it were to happen in these places.”

Photos: Department of Communications, Government of Bermuda