Conducting a reconnaissance survey and an assessment of an oil spill are crucial when responding to accidental oil spills. A survey is the only way to assess the extent of the spill in addition to deciding which areas should be given priority for clean-up. In addition, it helps authorities to decide which techniques and resources are most suitable.
When an oil spill reaches the coastline, reports on how much of the coastline has been polluted and how heavily the coastal sites are affected are very often so inadequate as to be of little use to decision makers.
This guide seeks to present a coastal survey method likely to produce a useable, short and yet complete report that can be used as a basis for filling in an operational coastal report form.
Table of contents
A - WHAT YOU WILL NEED TO KNOW
Why conduct surveys, defining sites, describing pollution
A.1 - Goals of reconnaissance surveys
A.2 - Nature and types of coastline
A.3 - Types of arrivals
A.4 - Mistaken pollution
B - WHAT TO DO BEFORE LEAVING ON ASSIGNMENT
Preparing for an assignment, what to take with you
B.1 - Preparing the assignment
B.2 - List of equipment
C WHAT TO DO DURING THE ASSIGNMENT
Observing, measuring, taking notes, taking samples
C.1 - Survey forms for polluted sites
C.2 - Filling in the form
C.3 - Quantifying pollution
C.4 - Special case: buried oil
C.5 - Taking samples