PORT of Townsville has carried out a trial of its new oil containment boom.

According to organisers, the exercise provided port personnel with “a hands-on experience” in deploying the self-inflating boom in the harbour.

The orange vinyl boom, which replaces the older foam-filled boom, self-inflates making it ideal for a fast response during an oil spill.

Representatives of the developer Carpas Expandi and its joint-venture partner Global Spill and Safety attended, along with representatives of Maritime Safety Queensland and the Port of Townsville.

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According to the port, the boom takes about 20 minutes to be deployed from its container.

As it is unfolded, air valves are opened to allow self-inflation to begin. The self-inflation process is assisted by wave movements once it is on the water.

The boom, which comes in a series of 25-metre inter-locking sections, is designed for use in calmer waters in the harbour.

Higher booms are used to contain substances on the open sea. After each use, the Port’s boom is washed down and folded back into a container that can be quickly moved to various locations around the port to be deployed when necessary.

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