Debate about sea route change Skip to content

Debate about sea route change

Minister of Transport Sturla Bödvarsson suggested the sea route in southwest Iceland, where transport vessel Wilson Muuga ran ashore before Christmas, should be changed.

Approximately one ship sails around the Reykjanes peninsula every five hours. Eight hundred thousand tons of oil are transported to Iceland every year and a large number of the transport vessels sail in this area. RÚV reports.

The sea route around the Reykjanes peninsula can be dangerous in bad weather, and southwest Iceland is known to be stormy.

A few years ago a report from the Norway-based international consulting firm Det Norske Veritas (DNV) concluded that this particular sea route should be avoided to prevent environmental accidents.

If the route around Reykjanes peninsula is avoided it will add 30 to 40 sea miles – about 3.5 percent – to a journey to the European mainland.

The Transport Minister said he had wanted to follow the advice of the consulting firm, but said shipping companies had prevented a sailing ban around Reykjanes peninsula.

Bödvarsson said that even though the shorter sea route was considered dangerous, the longer route around the peninsula could at times prove even more dangerous.

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