Nordvik drifting Arctic ship escorted by icebreakers

By Vessels

The tankship "Nordvik" was helpless and had been drifting in the Artic but now has the support of the icebreakers "Taymyr" and "Vaigach" and is trying to reach its home port. The reason for the drifting is a hit with an ice floe.

The Russian Sea and River Transport Agency and "Barents Obsever" informed that Nordvik had to send 1800 litres of diesel oil into the ship named "Boris Vilkitsky". 2 icebreakers (nuclear-powered), the "Taymyr" and the "Vaigach" are escorting "Nordvik" and "Boris Vilkitsky" through the Matisen strait to the home port of the drifting tankship - Khatanga.

It is known that "Nordvik" struck in a ice floe when passing the Matisen Strait, north of the Taimyr Peninsula, 12 days ago. Soon it was clear that the ship was taking on water in 1 of the ballast tanks.

There is an information given by Russian authorities, the "Nordvik" was violating the permit definied by the Northern Sea Route administration for sailing in waters with medium ice presence without asking to be accompanied by an icebreaker. The permission given to "Nordvik" was to pass only in the Kara Sea and the Laptev Sea and with special light ice conditions and accompanied by icebreaker.

Sailing in the Northern Sea Route is still dangerous and expensive but in the future we will sea more ship sailing in the region. Global warming is expected to melt the ice but weather as we know is unpredictable. For example 2 years ago the ice was much more compared to now. But the new shortcut between Europe and Asia will allow vessels to save fuel. Passage of ships has to be monitored because the burnt fuel leaves black carbon soot deposits.