Port Blair, Apr 19: Indian Coast Guard is the Central Coordinating Agency (CCA) for responding to oil spill that occurs in the Maritime Zones of India. Andaman and Nicobar Group of Islands are highly eco sensitive and the waters around islands are vulnerable to marine pollution. There have been continuous efforts by the Indian Coast Guard to train all stake holders in oil spill response so that concerted efforts are made in case of any eventuality resulting in accidental spillage of oil. Accordingly, the Indian Coast Guard has conducted structured courses as designed by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) for the personnel of Oil Handling Agencies, Resource Agencies, Stake Holders and Indian Coast Guard.
Pollution Response Team (A&N) of Indian Coast Guard conducted an Oil Pollution Preparedness Response and Co-operation Convention Level-I Course for the first responders from 16-19 Apr 18 at Port Blair. The course was designed to bring awareness on preparedness and response technique related to marine Oil Pollution as a first respondent. Apart from 12 personnel of the Indian Coast Guard, 05 Officers from different Government viz Department of Environment & Forest, Police Marine Force and Port Management Board Participated in the course. All participants were exposed to various theoretical aspects of oil spill properties, behaviour, fate and response techniques for containment and recovery. During the course, participants were also given extensive practical training in handling of oil spill response equipment. An exposure was also provided for Health and Safety precautions to be exercised during such operations. Wild life is also prone to high causalities during any oil spill and the method required for recovery and rehabilitation of wild life were also imparted during training by expert from department of Environment & Forest. The participants also visited Coast Guard Air Enclave at Port Blair and were briefed about the aerial application of OSD. All the participants opined that the course was very useful and beneficial to them in understanding the Oil Spill Response methodology and equipment handling techniques.