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Vessel caravan stuck in area free from ice anomalies — scientist

January 17, 19:30 UTC+3 MOSCOW
In the Arctic’s western sector the ice conditions are lighter due to the milder summer, but in the east, where the vessels got stuck, the situation is more complicated
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MOSCOW, January 17. /TASS/. No ice anomalies are registered in the Arctic’s eastern segment, where near Chukotka got stuck a caravan of two dry cargo vessels and two icebreakers, head of the ice monitoring and forecast department at the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (in St. Petersburg) Evgeny Mironov told TASS on Tuesday.

"There are no anomalies in the region (where the caravan got stuck) now," he said. "In January, in the eastern Arctic the ice conditions are always rather complicated, and a nuclear icebreaker should go before other vessels."

"The ice situation in the Arctic changes every year, and now it is closer to a medium ice layer, while in the earlier years the ice was lighter," he added.

This year, the severe winter with much snow is also in the Arctic, he continued. "In the Arctic’s western sector the ice conditions are lighter due to the milder summer, but in the east, where the vessels got stuck, the situation is more complicated and is close to average climate conditions."

TASS reported earlier in the day, a caravan of two dry cargo vessels (The Johann Mahmastal and The Sinegorsk) escorted by two icebreakers (The Kapitan Dranitsyn and The Admiral Makarov) could not depart from Pevek in Chukotka due to a complicated ice situation, which is measured 10 by a ten-point scale. The ice thickness near the East Siberian Sea by the Shelagsky Cape, the northernmost point of Chukotka, is more than one meter, and ice hummocks are 2.5 meters.

The caravan had arrived in Pevek from Arkhangelsk along the Northern Sea Route in early January and delivered to that Arctic region the materials for construction of a pier for the Akademic Lomonosov floating nuclear power plant (FNPP). 

The power plant will be delivered to Chukotka for further mounting in 2018.

The East Siberian Sea is the most icy of all the Russian seas in the Arctic. It is fully coated with ice from October-November to June-July.

Floating perennial ice remain in the sea’s eastern parts even in summer.

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