Polar Pioneer Flunks USCG Checkup

Shell’s drilling rig Polar Pioneer, currently docked in the port of Seattle, did not pass an inspection of the United States Coast Guard, according to local newspaper The Stranger.

As reported, the inspection involved examination of the vessel’s hull structure, electrical system, along with crew capabilities such as abandon ship and firefighting drills.

The United States Coast Guard did not specify what particular requirements the rig failed to meet, however; the coast guard gave the vessel’s crew time to rectify the irregularities.

“It’s not uncommon with these commercial vessels that there are issues to follow up on this type of inspection,” Lt. Dana Warr, a Coast Guard spokesperson in Seattle said.

The vessel will be subjected to another inspection before it is allowed to depart for the Arctic.

The Polar Pioneer moored at the Port of Seattle’s Terminal 5 almost two weeks ago after being towed from the Port of Los Angeles, amid protests organised by local environmental activists.

Shell’s Arctic drilling plans have been faced with fierce opposition from the environmentalist groups that have staged several rounds of protests, including chaining themselves to vessels in order to voice their disapproval of the plan.

Environmentalists are worried that drilling in the region could lead to catastrophic consequences on the environment by aiding to climate changes or even resulting in an oil spill.

World Maritime News Staff

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