§ Mr. Parkinson
Stocks of oil spill containment and treatment equipment are held by the oil industry, in accordance with their contingency plans, and Government. All standby vessels around offshore oil installations carry spraying equipment and dispersants. These vessels are required to be within five nautical miles of the installation. Dispersants and spraying equipment, for use in aircraft and larger vessels, are based at strategic locations around the coast. Inflatable booms and skimmer systems for containment and recovery of oil from the sea surface are also available.
The response strategy employed largely depends on the size and nature of the spill and its location, but it is expected that, where necessary, oil companies will respond 20W quickly enough to prevent damage to the environment. Specifically, for spills of oil from platforms in near shore areas, operators are required to be able to mount an initial response within 30 minutes using treatment equipment held on the standby vessel. Back-up resources must then be made available within half the minimum time predicted for oil to reach the beach.