The Association of Petroleum Professionals; Vivo Energy Uganda, Total Uganda, Kobil, and Mogas together with Uganda Police conducted a joint fire drill along the Seeta - Kampala highway, to test and establish the industry’s response preparedness in case of a fire outbreak.
Uganda faces oil tanker fire disasters that claim the lives of many and leave many more injured. This results from road accidents involving an oil tanker that usually involves an oil spill. Unfortunately these incidents usually attract crowds that scramble to scoop the leaking oil. Exposure of fuels increases the risk of a fire explosion causing death and injury to many.
In 2013, over 40 people were killed and many others seriously burned in a blaze that engulfed an oil tanker after it was hit by another vehicle in Namungoona, and in December 2001, 90 people died under similar circumstances in the eastern part of the country.
The Chairman of the Association of Petroleum Marketing Professionals, and Managing Director Vivo Energy Uganda, Mr Hans Paulsen, highlighted the need to proactively prepare to respond appropriately to such incidents. "These disasters are to a large extent avoidable. Industry players have individually put in place measures to avoid accidents through management of drivers and their own transport systems. We come together to share best practices and ensure we are adequately prepared to respond appropriately in event of such unfortunate incidents. A drill such as this enables us to share learnings as safety is a matter that affects the human being, our environment and our investments” said Paulsen.
Accidents involving oil tankers usually attract crowds who scramble to scoop some of the spilled fuel. Paulsen expressed that the public have little knowledge of what happens during an oil spill and are unable to gauge the risks involved. “It is our duty not only to be prepared as an industry but also to educate the public.
The deputy chief fire officer, Uganda Police fire brigade Mr. Hassan Kihanda encouraged the media to play a critical role in educating the masses about the dangers involved in scrambling for spilled fuel during an accident. “The fire brigade is committed to working with the industry partners to reduce the dangers involved in an oil tanker accident. We seek to respond in the shortest possible time with all the available resources at hand, to minimize the damage involved and to save lives and resources.”
The Association members and Uganda Police shared best practices and lessons learned during the joint industry drill to enhance the stakeholder’s readiness to respond.
About Vivo Energy Uganda
Vivo Energy Uganda, the company that distributes and markets Shell-branded fuels and lubricants, was established in February 2013. The Shell brand has been in Uganda for over 60 years. Vivo Energy Uganda has a storage capacity of 18,297 m³ and 116 service stations with a majority offering of Shell Cards and convenience retail stores. Vivo Energy Uganda employs 120 permanent employees but the business provides indirect employment to over 3,000 people. The company is recognised as the leader in the oil industry especially championing and setting standards for safety in sales and distribution.
Vivo Energy operates in Retail; Commercial Fuels (Marine, Mining and Aviation in partnership with Vitol Aviation); Liquefied Petroleum Gas and Lubricants in Botswana, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Cote D’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Mauritius, Madagascar, Morocco, Mozambique, Mali, Namibia, Senegal, Tunisia and Uganda.
The company employs around 2,250 people and operates 1,450 retail stations under the Shell brand and has access to approximately 900,000 cubic meters of fuel storage capacity. Shell and Vivo Lubricants will have blending capacity of around 170,000 metric tons at plants in seven countries (Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Morocco, Tunisia and Senegal) producing Shell branded lubricants and employ around 150 people.
Vivo Energy Uganda : Communications Manager
Telephone : +256772754001
E-mail : [email protected]