Flashback: Participants in the 2010 drill off the Sitra coast
Expert alerts Bahrain over oil spills in Gulf
Manama, May 21, 2014
It could take up to seven years for Gulf waters to recover from any chemical or oil spill, an expert has warned during a workshop designed to ensure Bahrain is ready to cope with an environmental disaster.
The event was organised by the Supreme Council for Environment (SCE) yesterday at its National Pollution Response Command Centre, in Sitra, and will be followed by a full scale drill later this year, said a report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
SCE chief executive Dr Mohamed Mubarak Bin Daina said authorities were on high alert for an ecological crisis, with 48,000 oil tankers sailing through the Gulf every year.
"Among the 48,000 oil tankers roaming the Gulf waters annually, the probability of an oil spill is large and critical - especially when this narrow body of water renews itself over the course of seven years," said Dr Bin Daina.
"This calls for constant reviewing of our emergency response and contingency plans."
He said it would take the collective efforts of at least 16 different bodies to adequately respond to such a disaster - which includes containment of a spill, the removal and disposal of hazardous materials and rehabilitation of the affected area.
The last drill was conducted in 2010, but this year's will incorporate latest methods and technologies for handling an ecological disaster.
In the 2010 drill, a mock scenario involved 150 tonnes of bunker fuel oil leaking from a tanker anchored off Sitra. - TradeArabia News Service