Challenging ice conditions in the water area of the Northern Sea Route stipulate the extension of the winter-spring navigation of nuclear-powered icebreakers of FSUE Atomflot. For the first time in four years, fast ice has formed on the access canal in the Gulf of Ob bar with its breaking up having paralyzed the shipping traffic, says the company.
“The global warming which has been making noise in the world seems to step back a little and we return to the normal work of 80-90-ies," said Andrey Smirnov, FSUE Atomflot’s Shipping Director. "Ice situation has become much more challenging: gas carriers and tankers have been brought to a standstill. Our partners have already applied for extending the agreement on providing icebreaking assistance. The winter-spring navigation period will be extended, at least through the first decade of July.”
Two shallow-draft nuclear-powered icebreakers of Rosatomflot, the Taymyr and Vaygach, operate in the Gulf of Ob today. The crews of the nuclear-powered icebreakers are to free the ice-bound vessels. At the port of Sabetta, the tankers and gas carriers will be assisted by FSUE Atomflot’s Portoflot: ice class tugboat Tambey and icebreaking tugboat Yuribey. Icebreaker Moskva will assist docking/undocking vessels. In late June, ice class tugboat Pur will join the fleet of Portoflot.