RRT - ready to respond wherever the emergency

In September six of our UK colleagues travelled to the other side of the world to support an emergency exercise organised by our Regional Response Team (RRT).

In this case, the simulated emergency was a Tier 3 worst-case discharge of diesel into the water of Apra Harbor on the Pacific Island of Guam. The RRT was called upon by the incident management team at Mobil Oil Guam’s Cabras Terminal to assist in responding to the ‘emergency’. 

One of our UK colleagues, Sam Cranston from Midstream, travelled direct to Guam to assist with the ‘clear-up’, while five others who are all members of the RRT, travelled to Kuala Lumpur to join an Emergency Support Group (ESG) established remotely to provide strategic assistance to the Incident Management Team on site.

Though this was ostensibly an Asia-Pacific RRT exercise, the RRT drew on specialist skills from its Americas and EAME RRT members to strengthen our response capability.

“It was fantastic to gather our Asia-Pacific RRT members together for the first face-to-face exercise in three years, and to involve some EAME and Americas’ RRT members,” says Travis Hansen, RRT coordinator for EAME and the Asia Pacific. “Even though we were split over two locations, the feedback we received from participants reinforced the value of bringing the team together to build our skills, to establish relationships and to maintain our incredible RRT culture.”

Other UK-based colleagues attending the exercise in Kuala Lumpur were Iain Stanley (Deputy Incident Commander), James Horner and Sam Capper (both from Operations) and Richard Scrase (Public & Government Affairs). 

Exercise Apra Harbor highlights

  • Unified Command led by the US Coast Guard (Guam is a US island territory), and included representatives from Guam Environmental Protection Agency and the Port Authority
  • Total of 206 participants: 168 from ExxonMobil, 38 from authorities and agencies
  • Remote support team in Kuala Lumpur helped ensure an effective response
  • Virtual reality used to enable remote responders to visualise the incident
  • Simulated press conference included US Coast Guard and regulators
  • Tested new technology and processes for assessing and clearing a ‘spill’
  • Training and refresher courses for all RRT members who attended
Mapping specialists explain the extent of the 'spill' and its likely trajectory with the aid of sophisticated computer mapping.

Newsline – November 2022