WebHeader_Grove.png
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
Limited Time Offer: The new NHPR owl scarf! Yours with a monthly gift of $10 or more.
News from everywhere *but* Central New Hampshire.

Crisis Prep: Portsmouth Oil Spill Drill to Test Response Team

OilSpillDrill_2015_SamEB_photo.JPG
Sam Evans-Brown
/
NHPR

Federal and state agencies will act out an oil spill response scenario in Portsmouth on Thursday as part of a federal requirement to practice for a real-life crisis.

This year's drill imagines a winter storm damaging part of the local Irving Oil facility overnight, causing a large amount of oil to spill into the Piscataqua River.

Real-life winter weather will keep responders from running the outdoor part of the drill on the city waterfront this year. But New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services spokesman Jim Martin says the makeshift command center they'll run indoors is still intense.

"I feel stressed when I'm in the exercise because so much is happening, and so much information is flowing,” he says.

More than 100 people from the Coast Guard, local fire departments, and Maine and New Hampshire agencies are expected to take part.

These drills happen annually across the two states. The last one New Hampshire hosted was in 2016.

Stay In The Know: Click here to sign up for NHPR's email newsletter.

Annie has covered the environment, energy, climate change and the Seacoast region for NHPR since 2017. She leads the newsroom's climate reporting project, By Degrees.

You make NHPR possible.

NHPR is nonprofit and independent. We rely on readers like you to support the local, national, and international coverage on this website. Your support makes this news available to everyone.

Give today. A monthly donation of $5 makes a real difference.