In the mid 1990'S, Alaska Clean Seas transformed from a typical oil spill response organization into an organization more involved with day to day operations in member company fields. A typical oil spill response organization is a fire house type organization with a warehouse and personnel which maintain equipment and provide spill response training.
Today, ACS personnel are assigned to member company fields and provide other services such as hazardous waste handling, air opacity readings, small spill response services, environmental field sampling, environmental management program maintenance, and environmental inspections. This is combined with the spill response equipment maintenance and spill response team training.
The services provided are outline in a Customer Service Agreement which is signed with each operating area. It outlines the services the ACS technicians will provide, which training is provided by ACS, and which training is provided by the member company.
The financial obligations are outlined in the Cost Sharing Principles. These principles indicate which services are considered allocated in the normal ACS budget and which services are direct billed back to the member company operating areas. In general, response equipment maintenance and spill response training are allocated services with the remaining being direct billed.
The benefits to this type of arrangement are many. The member companies obtain services for every day type activities and build up a better working relationship with the response organization. The spill organization members become acquainted with member company personnel and resources. They also become familiar with the area and with other contract services in the area. During a spill event, this knowledge increases the efficiency of the response and increases the trust between the member company and spill response organization.
Also, on day to day spill responses, the spill response organization personnel work hand and hand with regulatory agencies which builds up the trust and familiarization for bigger events.
With this arrangement, ACS is also able to sustain a higher number of qualified personnel. This improves ACS'S capability during a spill event and assists the member companies with a higher quality of spill response services.
This paper provides information on methods that an Oil Spill Removal Organization (OSRO) can become more involved in member company daily activities for the benefit of both the member company and the OSRO.