Americans Ignore Dutch Oil Experts

Americans are not leveraging Dutch assistance sufficiently to fight the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. Communicating with the Americans is difficult and they barely listen to Dutch experts. This Tuesday, a spokesperson for the Rotterdam-based firm Mari Flex confirmed a Radio Netherlands broadcast that contained this message: There are currently seven Dutch experts present in the United States to advise on the proper use of the six swipe arms provided for the American Coast Guard by the Dutch General of Public Works and Water Management. These arms can ingest up to 240 tons of oil per hour.


However, the American authorities are ignoring advice from the Dutch, says a Mari Flex spokesperson. “For example, we think it’s better to clean farther away from the source as the oil is thicker there and thus easier to clean.” It is frustrating, according to the Dutch firm. “After all, we were hired for our expertise.”


Since the ships started working last week, only ten tons of oil have been cleaned daily, barely five percent of maximum capacity. “The operation could be a lot more efficient and faster if the Americans would listen to the Dutch.” American law also restricts the operation of the ships.

American Flag

Ships with even bigger storage capacity are not allowed because they do not sail under the American flag. According to Mari Flex, the rescue operation will take “at least a few more months.” Dutch assistance was the result of an American request for help from the European Union.

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