The Swedish Coastguard: An important exercise of realistic extent

The Swedish Coastguard looks forward to working with the Norwegian Coastal Administration during the major exercise Scope 2017 in the Skagerrak to explore how emergency response can be improved and collaboration between countries during an action optimised.

“Our aim is to increase our knowledge of what we can do together with Norway in the event of a major oil or chemical spill,” says Jonas Holmstrand, who is a rescue organiser with the Swedish Coast Guard.

A good test

He has only been with the Coast Guard for six months, but he was responsible for all the exercises of one of Sweden’s municipal rescue services for 20 years. He explains that the Swedish Coast Guard has annual exercises in connection with the Copenhagen Agreement and the SweDenGer Agreement between Sweden, Denmark and Germany, as well as its own exercises. There are continuous national exercises.

“I believe the exercise in Langesund will be a good test of how we handle an incident of the type we have planned and we can all achieve a great deal from it. The scope of the exercise is realistic, in terms of the number of countries involved, the personnel and the vessels.

If we in Europe are to prepare ourselves for effective, large-scale initiatives, we must exercise together using a corresponding number of units,” says Holmstrand,

pointing out what would have to be done as a minimum in the event of a real incident of the same extent as the SCOPE 2017 scenario.

Following the sequence of events

His colleague, senior adviser Örjan Martinsson, adds that collaborative exercises are essential, since no country could handle a really major incident alone.

“And a real incident doesn’t keep office hours, it continues round the clock. So we must be able to keep the effort going throughout the sequence of events,” says Martinsson.

The Swedish Coast Guard has now started the countdown to the exercise, in which it will cooperate closely with MIRG (the Maritime Incident Response Group) in Norway and participate with its oil spill response vessel KBV 003.

Aim for the Swedish Coastguard:

  • Contribute to improved national and international coordination of vessel accidents involving hazardous and polluting cargo.
  • Decontamination of Swedish Coastguard 003 (Chemrec vessel) with crew from 003 and personnel from FOI

Swedish participation:

  • KBV 003
  • KBV 032 or 010
  • KBV 307
  • KBV 501 AP
  • Double Crew KBV 003
  • 6 -10 divers (Water-smoke-chem)
  • 2 persons from Swedish Research Institute, FOI

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