Falkland Islands Demining - A waste of time?

#1
I saw a couple of articles over the weekend on Sky and in the Torygraph about HMG's requirement to abide by the Ottowa Treaty and clear the Falkland Isles of mines by 2009.

I was interested to hear that the islanders don't really want it done, that UK was down sizing EOD effort (face it, plenty other work elsewhere) and according to the Torygraph, it would take a 200 man team 10-15 years to do the job.

Torygraph link here

I suppose my question is - is it feasible to clear the place up or are the mines now so deeply buried in peat bog or sand that to do so is an exercise in futility? Anyone with the expertise in this area able to comment?

My own view is it is a waste of time and resource and frankly if anyone should be forking out for the work to be done, it should be those nice folk that laid them in the first place.

MODs- this is probably better off in the Sapper forum. Could it be moved please?
 
#4
Could we ask Leading Seaman Turney to go get 'em? She could get to the awkward places with her rubber dinghy, and then go cross country backwards with a metal detector and a shovel.
 
#8
I was one of the first probably since the war to gain access to Gypsy Cove until a plethora of Crab brass decided to check it out and put it off limits again as according to them the penguins had complained.

The beach next to Gypsy Cove was mined to fcuk and the tide would drag the plastic mines out and dump them back on Gypsy Cove but apparently the neighbouring beach had been cleared though an EOD officer lost a leg clearing Gypsy Cove and not in a careless way.

There was the classic from one of the FIBS numpties as 'The Minefield Staus Report' was the highlight of the day on the radio and after Mr EOD declared that a sheep had blown itself to bits doing a tap dance in a minefield, said numpty asked if it was dead. The silence was hilarious.

As far as I remember there are NO maps or at best a few as the majority of the mines were planted during the escalation of the conflict and Argies are not reknowned for looking to the future in a caring sort of way.

The Bennies are used to them and what better thing to do after a night on the lash than run through a minefield? I personally think the costs outweigh the benefits and the odd exploding sheep or maimed wayward tourist is a small price to pay while the Argies continue to posture.
 
#10
I understand that all the minefields have been identified and fenced off. However, I also understand that mines can move when placed in soft sand or peat. If the fields were de-mined, could anyone honestly declare them free from explosives?

Litotes
 
#11
penguins are apparently to light to set the mines off unlike the bennies dogs so pingu gets to breed in safety sort of extreme conservation measures :twisted:
goose green the minefields have been incorporated into the golf course :D .
but before we get carried away laughing at bennies its been made a military offense to be caught in a minefield or stand at the edge of one and throw rocks into one to try and set a mine off :( that includes the morons of an mp unit who had there photos taken lined up the wrong side of the mine field fence :?
hm forces proving once again the missing link between man and plankton :twisted:
 
#12
At present an Impossible Operation unless some genius has come up with a 'cunning' Plan?!, as far as I know there is still no method that has been devised to locate and clear the mines in the Falklands, they move with the 'living' peat over the years, sometimes several hundred metres as well as very deep, all mined areas are known and marked and the RE EOD have maintained the marking and fences all these years, dealing with any mines that have 'moved' and appear at the surface... other than digging the entire area of peat up (Impossible task!!!) with armoured plant and somehow drying off then spinning the peat through a rotator it simply cannot be done, someone somewhere is having a laugh if they think it can be?!!!
 
#14
brighton hippy said:
remember crossing a stream on patrol and looking down to find a minefield warning sign :oops:
guess it must have been from somewhere else us none of us got blown up
A lot of the signs (made by the RE Workshops Signwriters/Finishers) in the early years were 'removed' and taken back to blighty as souvenirs! this was then made a prevalent offence to be found in possession of 'said sign' you could and maybe still can however ask the RE Workshops (usually at the cost of a crate to yourself) nicely, if they would do you a presentation piece made from one of the signs complete with your name, tour dates etc. and the paperwork to go with it letting the monkeys know it is a legit presentation piece and not taken from a minefield fence!
 
#15
in_the_cheapseats said:
I saw a couple of articles over the weekend on Sky and in the Torygraph about HMG's requirement to abide by the Ottowa Treaty and clear the Falkland Isles of mines by 2009.

I was interested to hear that the islanders don't really want it done, that UK was down sizing EOD effort (face it, plenty other work elsewhere) and according to the Torygraph, it would take a 200 man team 10-15 years to do the job.

Torygraph link here

I suppose my question is - is it feasible to clear the place up or are the mines now so deeply buried in peat bog or sand that to do so is an exercise in futility? Anyone with the expertise in this area able to comment?

My own view is it is a waste of time and resource and frankly if anyone should be forking out for the work to be done, it should be those nice folk that laid them in the first place.

MODs- this is probably better off in the Sapper forum. Could it be moved please?
The Torygraph article makes no mention of the Ottawa treaty and I don't see why it should. The Ottawa treaty relates to manufacture, sale, stockpiling and use of Anti Personnel mines. If it required mine clearance then Angola, Vietnam, Cambodia and Western Sahara best get busy. Egypt and Libya will be pretty hectic too!

What sort of mines are they in the main? Are they detectable or more like an ELSIE with the detectable ring missing?

Sounds like a good contract for someone. How well does an EOD suit protect from AP mines?
 
#16
EX_STAB said:
in_the_cheapseats said:
I saw a couple of articles over the weekend on Sky and in the Torygraph about HMG's requirement to abide by the Ottowa Treaty and clear the Falkland Isles of mines by 2009.

I was interested to hear that the islanders don't really want it done, that UK was down sizing EOD effort (face it, plenty other work elsewhere) and according to the Torygraph, it would take a 200 man team 10-15 years to do the job.

Torygraph link here

I suppose my question is - is it feasible to clear the place up or are the mines now so deeply buried in peat bog or sand that to do so is an exercise in futility? Anyone with the expertise in this area able to comment?

My own view is it is a waste of time and resource and frankly if anyone should be forking out for the work to be done, it should be those nice folk that laid them in the first place.

MODs- this is probably better off in the Sapper forum. Could it be moved please?
The Torygraph article makes no mention of the Ottawa treaty and I don't see why it should. The Ottawa treaty relates to manufacture, sale, stockpiling and use of Anti Personnel mines. If it required mine clearance then Angola, Vietnam, Cambodia and Western Sahara best get busy. Egypt and Libya will be pretty hectic too!

What sort of mines are they in the main? Are they detectable or more like an ELSIE with the detectable ring missing?

Sounds like a good contract for someone. How well does an EOD suit protect from AP mines?
It was recc'ed for commercial clearance late last year...
 
#17
We were walking down a path on to a beach where we were working between two minefields marked off with tape. At the bottom we find this penguin with one foot on one side of the tape and the other foot on the other side trying to walk towards the water. It would walk forward and as the tape stretched it would then walk backwards.

We watched it for ten minutes in hysterics, forwards, backwards, forwards, backwards, apparently penguins can’t lift their legs up.

It didn't blow up so we mounted a rescue mission and freed it, only to find the bird dead on the beach the next day probably from drinking to much avtac.
 
#18
Having signed up to the Mine Ban Treaty (Ottawa Treaty), the UK is obliged to clear all minefields in its territory by March 2009. They can apply for a 10-year extension to this but, as a signatory, the UK will have to clear the minefields eventually; otherwise it could hardly get all righteous with Developing Countries that don’t.

The 10 year rule (under article 5) is one reason some countries cite for not signing the treaty; it’s simply not feasible.

One proposal put forward for the UK (the Falklands Initiative) is to clear, or fund clearance of, an equivalent amount of land somewhere else in the world with a more pressing need for it. Cost estimated at approx $40 million.

Link to Landmine Monitor Report for the FI if anyone’s that interested.

.
 
#19
Tilbake said:
Having signed up to the Mine Ban Treaty (Ottawa Treaty), the UK is obliged to clear all minefields in its territory by March 2009. They can apply for a 10-year extension to this but, as a signatory, the UK will have to clear the minefields eventually; otherwise it could hardly get all righteous with Developing Countries that don’t.

The 10 year rule (under article 5) is one reason some countries cite for not signing the treaty; it’s simply not feasible.

One proposal put forward for the UK (the Falklands Initiative) is to clear, or fund clearance of, an equivalent amount of land somewhere else in the world with a more pressing need for it. Cost estimated at approx $40 million.

Link to Landmine Monitor Report for the FI if anyone’s that interested.

.
I stand corrected.

I see why Egypt and Libya didn't sign up then!. Personally, I don't see why we signed it. Agreeing not to export them would have been enough.
 
#20
1) Round up as many chavs as you can find in any English county.

2) Export chavs to F.I.

3) Form chavs up in three ranks.

4) Execute "Advance in Review Order" over suspect mined areas until

either, a) All areas are clear, or b) return to U.K. for chav replen.

5) Continue the movement until status 4)a) is achieved.

Job's a good 'un! :twisted: