Finland has sent two vessels to Estonian waters to help clean up an oil spill near that country’s north coast.
The ships Hylje and Seili were dispatched already on Tuesday evening. Because of difficult ice conditions, the vessels did not reach the area until Wednesday afternoon.
Ice on the Gulf of Finland is 30-50 centimetres thick, and in places, packed ice makes for very difficult sailing.
Finland sent the two vessels as "fraternal aid" at its own expense, before any official requests came from Estonia.
The spill was so extensive, that Finnish authorities wanted to start cleaning it up well before any of the oil reaches Finnish waters.
Officials believe that the oil came from the Runner 4 vessel, which sank when another ship collided into it while both were in a convoy escorted by a Russian icebreaker. The ship was carrying 35 tonnes of light fuel oil and over 100 tonnes of heavy fuel oil when it sank.