Oil Spill Contingency Plan

This Oil Spill Contingency Plan has been developed to conform with the Merchant Shipping (Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Co-operation Convention) Regulations 1998, SI1998 No. 1056, which entered into effect on 15 May 1998.The plan is designed to meet the statutory responsibilities placed on the Harbour Authority for responding to oil pollution within the harbour area.

Purpose of the Plan

The plan is provided to assist the Harbour Authority and other organisations in dealing with an accidental discharge of oil. Its primary purpose is to set in motion the necessary actions to stop or minimise the discharge and to mitigate its effects. Effective planning ensures that the necessary actions are taken in a structured, logical and timely manner.

This plan guides the Dock and Harbour Master and his Duty Officers through the decisions which will be required in an incident response. The tables, figures and checklists provide a visible form of information, thus reducing the chance of oversight or error during the early stages of dealing with an emergency situation.

For the plan to be effective, it must be:

  • familiar to those with key response functions in the Port;

  • regularly exercised; and,

  • reviewed and updated on a regular basis.

This plan uses a tiered response to oil pollution incidents.The plan is designed to deal with Tier One and Tier Two incidents, and to provide guidance for the initial response to a Tier Three incident.Where a spillage is associated with a wider emergency, such as a shipboard fire, then additional factors involving the safety of personnel will take precedence over the pollution response. In this case, reference must be made to the Port Emergency Plan. The salvage and casualty management of any vessel, which poses a threat of pollution, are priority considerations.

During oil spill response activities account must be taken of the following:

  • Site hazard information

  • Adherence to permit procedures

  • Spill site pre-entry briefing

  • Boat safety

  • COSHH Regulations andmaterial safety data sheets

  • Personal protective equipment needs

  • Heat stress , cold stress and hypothermia

  • Decontamination

For a copy of the latest version of the plan please contact Local Port Services on