BPTT commits to environmental protection
Monday, July 16 2012
It was a well-executed demonstration of innovation and professionalism as the emergency response teams from BP Trinidad and Tobago and Eastern Divers combined to perform an oil spill response equipment deployment exercise at Pilote River, Guayaguayare, last week.
The objective of the exercise was to prevent an oil spill from adversely impacting the mangrove area in the vicinity of Pilote River. This activity represented the culmination of a two-day programme that included a workshop session conducted on the first day.
BP’s Senior Crisis Management Adviser for the Western Hemisphere, Bob Pfannsteil, was on hand throughout the exercise. “Like the other drills before, today’s exercise is about developing skills to expand the response expertise of bpTT, as well as the Eastern Divers’ team. The workshop exposed them to new oil spill techniques and equipment and today’s session allowed them to put that knowledge into practice. Continuous improvement on skills and strategies is the only way to be ready if ever they are called upon to respond and protect the environment,” said Pfannsteil.
In addition to the actual deployment exercise, the emergency response team was exposed to new types of equipment demonstrated by a team of experts from Clean Caribbean and Americas (CCA), which was formed through collaboration of most of the major international and regional oil companies and oil related facilities in the Caribbean and Latin America.
According to Mike Gass, technical adviser with CCA, “The two main goals were equipment and technique familiarisation as well as completing the oil spill response scenario. It is about combining safety, teamwork, mobilisation, equipment, communications and other requisites in containing and cleaning up oil effectively so as to minimise environmental impact. The team has responded well and with this type of practice, they will respond successfully, if ever they are called upon.”