The Coast Guard vessel, Svalbard, had a Russian trawler in tow when it returned from patrol in the Barents Sea.
The trawler, Borej, experienced engine failure and needed assistance from the Norwegian rescue vessel on Thursday, wrote Nordlys newspaper.
‘It was nothing dramatic, but the weather forecast was bad and the distances were great’, said the duty officer, Njål Havard Rokenes of the Coast Guard. Svalbard needed six hours to reach the Russian trawler.
‘Without us, they could have been lying there a long time, and then it may have been a rescue. Basically, this was a commercial mission for a tug, but such resources are limited in the Barents Sea,’ said Røkenes. The Coast Guard expects, however, no payment, and the guard commander explained that it is part of their preparedness for sea rescue missions.
The trawl is still at the bottom of the Barents Sea, but Borej is scheduled to retrieve it when the machines are repaired.
During the past three-weeks, the same Norwegian patrol ship also rescued twelve students and faculty members from the University in Svalbard after their ship began taking on water.
Rokenes described the mission as successful, but pointed out that there is less activity in the Barents Sea in wintertime.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today