On November 20, the nuclear icebreaker “Vaygach” (belongs to Atomflot) will finish transit escorting of the convoy that includes 5 vessels: «UHL FUSION», «GOLDEN PEARL», «GOLDEN SUEK», «NORDIC QINNGUA», «NORDIC NULUUJAAK». The vessels will continue the passage without icebreaker assistance eastward from Cape Dezhnev.
After the operation will have finished, “Vaygach” will head to the water area of the Pevek port. A convoy of 3 vessels («RZK CONSTANTA», «TURUKHAN», «GRIGORIY SHELIKHOV») will be organized for the further escort in the western direction. The vessels «KUMPULA», «SELENGA», «VLADIMIR RUSANOV», «SEVERNYY PROEKT», «MEKHANIK PUSTOSHNYY» will join the caravan close to the New Siberian Islands.
«For the first time in the past seven years, the process of ice formation in certain areas of the Northern Sea Route has begun 2 weeks earlier», said General Director of Atomflot, Mustafa Kashka. «But in fact, since the beginning of November, shipping in some areas without icebreaker assistance has been impossible. Despite this, the company fulfills its contractual obligations and ensures safe navigation in the water area of the Northern Sea Route».
The favorable ice conditions of the previous years have garbled the idea of working on the NSR in the eastern direction among some shipowners. However, according to the Order of the Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation of October 13, 2015 N 298 On the approval of regulations in the seaport of Pevek, clause 8 it is stated: «Navigation in the seaport is carried out from July to October. In case of favorable ice conditions, the navigation period can be extended».
At the present day, 3 nuclear icebreakers are working in the NSR waters: «Yamal» «Taimyr» and «Vaygach». In the beginning of December, the icebreaker «50 let Pobedy» will join, then – the lead universal nuclear icebreaker «Arktika».
«Today, the ice conditions do not allow to provide the icebreaker assistance in a convoy from west to east. Only icebreaker support in tow is possible», noted First Deputy General Director – Director for Shipping of Atomflot, Leonid Irlitsa. «For the effective usage of the water area of the Northern Sea Route, shipping participants need to pay more attention to the selection of vessels for operation in the last months of summer-autumn navigation and timely coordinate activities with the Marine Operations Headquarters».