Karachi, November 16, 2016 (PPI-OT): On the direction of Admiral Muhammad Zakaullah NI (M) Chief of the Naval Staff, Pakistan Navy and Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA) in coordination with all the stake holders conducted a Marine Oil Spill Exercise BARRACUDA-VII from 14-16 November 2016.
The exercise was aimed at rehearsing the oil spill procedures and contingency mechanism. This Marine Oil Spill Exercise was conducted in two phases. Exercise briefing was held on 14 Nov 16 at HQ PMSA and included opening brief, discussions and preoperational checks for practical exercise. Commander Pakistan Fleet Vice Admiral Arifullah Hussaini along with Rear Admiral Jamil Akhtar Director General Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA) attended the opening brief. All stake holders and their reps participated in the briefing.
Subsequent to planning and training of all stake holders Phase-II was conducted today, encompassing practical oil containment exercise near Karachi anchorage area at sea. Oil Spill equipment was practically deployed and response procedure were rehearsed. The simulated oil spill was recovered successfully.
Assets of Pakistan Navy, Pakistan Maritime Security Agency and various stakeholders including Karachi Port Trust, Port Qasim Authority and BYCO participated in the sea exercise. Reps of Joint Staff Headquarter, Naval Headquarters, National Disaster Management Authority, BEPA, NIO and DG Pakistan Coastal Guard also attended the exercise. DG PMSA Rear Admiral Jamil Akhtar witnessed the exercise from a PMSA ship.
A large contingent of media and TV Channels also observed the exercise at sea. While interacting with media DG PMSA briefed on the objectives of exercise and capabilities possessed by various departments relation to Oil Spill incident response. He also mentioned that Pakistan Navy and PMSA have requisite where–with-al to ensure security in all Maritime Zones of Pakistan including Gwadar.
He also said that capabilities held by PN, PMSA and other stake holders like port authorities and oil marketing companies can be effectively utilized at any location along Pakistan Coast including Gwadar, in case of any oil spill incident. Rear Admiral Jamil Akhtar also briefed media on issues of illegal activities at sea and actions being taken by PMSA, to curb the same. PMSA efforts for eradicating smuggling of contraband items, registration of fishing boats at Balochistan and Sindh Coastal areas, creating awareness about Marine Pollution and control of illegal fishing were also highlighted on this occasion.
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