The Easington Gas Terminal is one of the UK’s three main gas terminals, along with St Fergus, Aberdeenshire, and Bacton, Norfolk. The site has three plants – two run by BP and one by Centrica. Approximately 20% of the UK’s imported gas from Norway is brought ashore at the Easington Gas Terminal via the Langeled pipeline, which is a massive 1,200km-long underwater pipe. After being captured at Easington, the Norwegian gas is transferred to the UK’s national supply network.
Centrica confirmed that the collision occurred at around noon on April 22, and all personnel were safe and accounted for. They also stated that the safety of their employees and partners is their top priority, and they sent all non-essential platform workers home as a precaution. In addition, they activated their emergency response plan to deal with and investigate the incident.
According to a spokesperson for HM Coastguard, they were alerted to the collision between a vessel and the offshore gas installation Rough 47-3B in the North Sea off the Yorkshire coast at around 12.10pm on April 22. There were no reports of casualties, pollution, or structural damage to the platform. The vessel involved in the collision sustained damage above the waterline but made its way to Great Yarmouth for repairs. The Maritime and Coastguard Agency carried out a post-collision inspection of the vessel on April 23.
Offshore Vessel Traffic Monitoring Service
Royal Dirkzwager operates a 24/7/365 control room to monitor the vessel traffic in the vicinity of offshore assets like wind parks and offshore energy installations. Using remote-controlled VHF radio’s ships are warned 45 minutes before when a ship is on a collision course with an offshore installation. Dirkzwager currently monitors over 40 platforms in the Dutch part of the north sea as well as the offshore farm outside the coast of Scheveningen.
More information about Offshore VTMs and surveillance can be found here.