Monday 4 September, 2023
A Marine Oil Spill exercise will be held at Kaiti Beach tomorrow.
The exercise will be based on a scenario where a private launch has anchored just off the rocks at Kaiti Beach, after it lost power coming into the region. In the scenario, the launch has 400 litres of diesel and 50 litres of hydraulic fluids on board – both present in the bilge.
The exercise will be headed by Tairāwhiti regional on-scene commander Phil Nickerson and includes staff from Gisborne District Council and the Marine Pollution Response Service.
Mr Nickerson says the exercise will be based on Kaiti Beach, with an Emergency Operations Centre set up at the Gisborne Yacht Club. Booms will be deployed and an environmental assessment carried out.
The inter-agency exercise is to ensure seamless and efficient capability should there be an oil spill in this region.
Annually there are around 200 oil spills across New Zealand, and most of those are from human error.
Mr Nickerson says the exercise also helps with ongoing education in our community.
“We are all kaitiaki for our environment and moana.”
Under the Maritime Transport Act 1994 Gisborne District Council is responsible for responding to oil spills in the coastal marine area within 12 nautical miles out to sea from the Gisborne / East Coast coastline.
The Maritime Transport Act requires all regional councils to have a regional oil spill contingency plan.
- All reports of oil spills or shipping incidents within the Gisborne / East Coast coastal marine area need to be reported to Gisborne District Council immediately on 0800 653 800, or 867 2049.