In the early hours of the 12 May, the accommodation rig Regalia will leave Scapa Flow for the North Sea after 6 months at anchor. During that time, there has been much activity surrounding the Regalia with over 400 vessel movements carrying local supplies, weekly crew changes, waste collection, scaffolding for maintenance and marine engineers.
Visiting rigs are a new market both for the Harbour Authority and the local supply chain, but the rig owners and operators Prosafe appear to have been extremely pleased with the service all round.; so much so that the Prosafe accommodation rig Safe Zephyrus is due to arrive in Scapa Flow by the end of May for a short term anchorage and it is hoped that the Regalia will return in early July.
The economic benefit to the local supply chain has been considerable over the 6 month period with the rig being the subject of an extensive maintenance programme with almost exclusive use of local skills and resources. Over a million pounds been spent locally by Prosafe, the vast majority of this going directly to local marine, wholesale and transportation services. This level of spend and more is expected to continue with future rig arrivals in Scapa Flow.
With the crude oil price now rising close to US$ 50 a barrel, the highest level for almost 2 years, it is hoped that this will reinvigorate the oil and gas industry and that Scapa Flow can play host to such vessels for the longer term.