Liaison with France – sharing knowledge with a common goal for effective oil spill response operations

In late September, 2011, the Brest, France based Centre of Practical Expertise in Pollution Response (CEPPOL) together with Marseille, France based Bourbon Offshore visited Lamor Corporation to familiarize themselves with oil spill recovery equipment and new technologies

The distinguished guests from CEPPOL and Bourbon Offshore were given a demonstration onboard YAG Louhi, Finland’s and the Baltic Sea’s most efficient offshore multi-purpose oil and chemical spill vessel equipped with Lamor’s newest oil spill recovery (OSR) technology and solutions. YAG Louhi began operations in the Gulf of Finland in mid-2011.

Commissioned by the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), the €48 million YAG Louhi is based at the Port of Upinniemi approx. 40 kms west of Helsinki in the archipelago. The vessel is operated by the Finnish Navy and YAG Louhi is equipped to sail in the Baltic Sea all year round and it can reach a speed of 15 knots and penetrate 50 cm (20 in) thick ice sheets, travelling at 7.5 knots.

CEPPOL is in charge of preparing the French Navy for its environmental responsibilities and providing support and expertise to the maritime authorities and response operation coordinators.

It is a unit of the French Navy under the authority of the commander of the Atlantic maritime area (CELCANT), and is commissioned as the interdepartmental authority for pollution response within the Navy and is answerable to the Maritime Headquarters.

Bourbon offers the offshore oil and gas industry a full spectrum of marine services based on a range of innovative, latest-generation and highly productive vessels. The company has two principal activities, marine and subsea by their very nature insist on the most rigorous standards, a full spectrum of marine services based on a range of

One vessel with multi-functions

Lamor’s Regional Manager Europe, Christoffer Wallgren explains: “The multipurpose vessel YAG Louhi has been fitted with several of our newest OSR technologies such as our in-built skimmers that are capable of collecting 1,200 tons of spilled oil during a deployment,” he says.

“The vessel has four different types of Lamor brush skimmers,  in-built brush conveyor belt-type skimmers, bucket skimmers mounted on cranes, free floating offshore skimmers with umbilical hose reel systems and so called ice brushes mounted on the aft deck,” Wallgren highlights.

YAG Louhi is designed to be capable of recovering spilled oil and chemicals in both open water and ice conditions, extinguishing shipboard fires and emergency towing of ships operating in the Gulf of Finland. The new vessel also has sufficient icebreaking capability to assist oil tankers. In addition to environmental duties, YAG Louhi will be used as a support ship for underwater operations by the Finnish Navy.

Hands-on cooperation

CEPPOL’s Commandant Jean-Pierre Inizian is highly appreciative for the liaison visit to garner information about OSR equipment from Lamor and familiarization with YAG Louhi. “The aim of our visit was to get a hands-on introduction to the latest multi-purpose OSRV and its equipment. The patented Wave Dampening Channel for oil recovery in high seas and stormy conditions coupled with in-built Lamor Free Floating Offshore skimmer, the LFF100, were very impressive,” he stated.

“Moreover, I want to thank Captain Markus Santasalo together with his crew on YAG Louhi who made our visit onboard a positive and unforgettable memory for all of us!” Commander Inizian stated.

“I want to express my appreciation and extend my thank you for the technical information regarding the Lamor offshore LFF100 skimmer,” says CEPPOL’s Bruno Lesven, Technical Engineer.

“The demonstrations and implementation of the oil spill response equipment onboard YAG Louhi was perfect and very enriching. Christoffer you arranged a perfect liaison visit that was not only informative but fun,” says CEPPOL’s Jean-Luc Antoine, Technical Engineer.

Bourbon Offshore’s Project Manager, Eitel M. Boka stated: “The in-built Lamor OSR equipment was highly interesting and I enjoyed observing the equipment demonstrations onboard. That said, another interesting and unique feature to see onboard, and a novelty I might add, was the in-built sauna. We do understand and respect the need for a sauna in arctic conditions such as in Finland, so I must conclude that YAG Louhi is truly a multi-purpose vessel with multi functions in multi scenarios for multi-talented people,” he says with a broad smile.

Jean-Pierre Mortreux, Office Director at Lamor France stated: We value the cooperation and expertise of CEPPOL and Bourbon Offshore since we have a common goal, specifically oil spill recovery operations. Collectively we need to work together when tackling incident’s that have both long and short-term effects on the environment. Thus, such visits are important for all involved.

Name: Louhi
Owner: Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE)
Operator: Finnish Navy
Ordered: 2007
Builder: Uudenkaupungin Työvene Oy
Cost: 48 million euros
Christened: March 8, 2011
Commissioned: May 2011
Identification: Call sign: OJBP, MMSI 230616000
Type: Oil recovery vessel
Displacement: 2,200 tons (lightship)
3,450 tons (max)
Length: 71.4 m (234.3 ft)
Beam: 14.5 m (47.6 ft)
Height: 24.0 m (78.7 ft)
Draught: 5.0 m (16.4 ft)
Ice class: 1A Super
Main engines: 4 × Wärtsilä 9L20 (4 × 1,800 kW)
Propulsion: Diesel-electric, 2 × Rolls-Royce azimuth
thrusters (2 × 2,700 kW)
Speed: 15 knots in open water, 7.5 knots in
50 cm (20 in) ice
Range: 6,000 nautical miles
Endurance: 20 days
Capacity: 1,200 mᵌ for recovered oil, 200 mᵌ
for chemicals
Crew: 10; accommodation for 40 personnel
OSR equipment: Lamor Corporation
Armament: Can be armed during crisis


Text: Thomas Barbieri