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Bio-securing Shipping Containers

Keeping the Antarctic Pest Free!

The British Antarctic Survey (BAS) is an institute of the Natural Environment Research Council (UKRI-NERC), which delivers and enables world-leading interdisciplinary research in the Polar Regions. Its skilled science and support staff based in Cambridge, Antarctica and the Arctic, work together to deliver research that uses the Polar Regions to advance our understanding of Earth and our impact on it. Research is carried out over many months, and therefore equipment is sent over to its stations on the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic. As part of the Bio-Security to fulfil requirements in the Antarctic Treaty, all containers with equipment are checked for any pests prior to departing the UK. This is to ensure that no pests or intrusive species are accidently introduced the Antarctic.

The client needed a company who could achieve this as well as attend at site on a specific date and time. The shipping containers used were based in the Harwich port and needed treating as close to boarding as possible as the longer the time between treatment and boarding, the greater the risk of infestation being unnoticed. This created a specific window for us to attend and to treat the containers, whilst working with other parties to ensure a successful project.

Solution Implemented:

A dog detection team attended the container and we then followed them placing rodent monitoring, insect monitoring and insecticide fumigation treatments to each container. From here they were then closed and sealed, given unique seal numbers, and then boarded. The containers were boarded on to the RRS Sir David Attenborough ship and from here it travelled to the end destination and the containers unloaded.

The treatments were carried out and the shipping containers made bio-secure. When they arrive in their end destination we can be confident that any movement of pests between locations has been prevented.

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