HMS Protector Gets Busy in the Antarctic

The Royal Navy’s Ice Patrol ship has been carrying out an intense programme of Antarctic Treaty inspections since the start of the new year.

It has been a busy summer for HMS Protector which is carrying out Antarctic patrols on behalf of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), surveys for the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office (UKHO) as well as providing logistic support to the British Antarctic Survey (BAS).

The ship has also been hosting an international Antarctic Treaty Inspection Team consisting of legal, environmental and scientific experts from the UK and the Czech Republic.

This team has been preparing reports on the compliance of inspected research stations, cruise ships and yachts with the Antarctic Treaty and its protocol on Environmental Protection.

This Treaty is committed to preserving the Antarctic for peace and science and the UK, as an original signatory, continues to strongly support it as the best way to preserve the fragile region.

The ship’s company have not only provided support to the team carrying out the inspections, but also been taking part in them.

Engineers have used their experience and training in evaluating systems such as water production, waste management, fire and safety procedures in the bases, while the Medical Officer has been inspecting the medical and emergency facilities, health and hygiene.

Another of Protector’s roles, in the Antarctic Treaty area, is to clear any waste they come across.

Press release, Image: Royal Navy