Yesterday, September 2nd, a number of our Belgian coast guard partners, together with the Netherlands and the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) practised their anti-pollution skills at sea.
Since 2001 the Belgian authorities own specialized equipment for the combating of pollution at sea, more in particular oil spills. This is a limited capacity which can be used for the first interventions. In case of a large-scale pollution, the neighbouring countries can be relied upon to lend a helping hand. Furthermore, we can also appeal to EMSA and the vessels that they keep stand-by. To ensure the deployment goes as smoothly as possible, exercises are held regularly.
The exercise yesterday took place near the Goote Bank, approximately 20 kilometres off the coast. Following coast guard partners brought the exercise to a successful end: Directorate-General (DG) Environment (coordinator), Fleet, Maritime and River police, Belgian Science Policy Office/Management Unit of the North Sea Mathematical Models (MUMM, ministry of Defense, Shipping Assistance Division/Maritime Rescue and Coordination Centre and Civil Protection. The governor of West-Flanders followed the exercise as observer.
More information: www.health.belgium.be