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NORTH-EAST PASSAGE COLLISION


News came in the NAUTICAL LOG Press Release folder this morning of a collision between two tankers in the North-East Passage. It might at first glance seem strange that in a area of relatively few ships there would be a collision. Having had the experience of serving in icebreakers as an OOW NAUTICAL LOG knows only too well they can occur surprising easily. Vessels move in convoys under icebreaker escort and depending on ice conditions may be quite close to each other. Add in poor visibility and the difficulty of stopping quickly in ice if the vessel ahead should suddenly have to stop. Very often there is a lot of engine power being applied to make forward progress and the restriction effect of the ice can change quite rapidly.

In fact this seems to be what happened as the report states that the MT Varzuga (1977) hit the stern of the MT Indiga (1976) whose hull was damaged. Both vessels have 1A-Super ice-classification. Hull integrity was maintained as both the tankers are double-hulled and none of the 15,000 tonnes of diesel fuel cargo each carried was spilled. There were difficult ice conditions and poor visibility at the time of the incident.

Good Watch..

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