Oslo – An oil tanker and a Norwegian navy frigate collided near the coast of western Norway on Thursday, triggering the shutdown of a major export terminal for North Sea crude.
The incident reportedly left eight people with minor injuries.
There was no sign of any leak from the “Sola TS’’ oil tanker, although it will return to port for inspection, Ben Vikoeren, rescue leader at the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre for southern Norway, told Reuters.
“The KNM Helge Ingstad frigate took on water and was at risk of sinking. Its crew of 137 had been evacuated,’’ Vikoeren said.
The tanker had earlier left Equinor’s Sture oil shipment terminal with a cargo of crude, and the facility will be temporarily shut as a precautionary measure, the company said.
The Sture terminal receives oil through pipelines from a string of North Sea fields, including the Oseberg, Grane, Svalin, Edvard Grieg and Ivar Aasen, which is exported to global markets on oil tankers.
“It was not clear for how long the terminal will remain closed,’’ an Equinor spokeswoman said.
The Sola TS, an Aframax class vessel built in 2017, belongs to Tsakos Energy Navigation, according to the company’s website.
The KNM Helge Ingstad had recently taken part in NATO’s Trident Juncture military exercise, which centred on defence of Norway.