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Libya Closes Four Major Oil Ports as Storm Daniel Sweeps Through

Storm Daniel
Storm Daniel (RAMMB / CIRA)

Published Sep 10, 2023 3:40 PM by The Maritime Executive

Libya has announced a temporary closure of four of its major oil ports as a precaution from Storm Daniel, which made a landfall in northeastern Libya on Sunday. The affected ports include Ras Lanuf, Zueitina, Brega and Es Sidra. The ports are expected to be closed for at least three days.

Meanwhile, the state-owned National Oil Corporation (NOC) has advised its affiliated companies to take utmost precaution and declare a state of maximum alert in preparation of the storm. “You are asked to monitor the ports and shipping movement and take measures to maintain the highest levels of safety…… and take measures to protect industrial units, production lines and storage units,” NOC said.

Last week, Storm Daniel swept across Greece, Bulgaria and Turkey leaving behind a trail of destruction. The storm has been hovering over the Mediterranean Sea for nearly a week, becoming a tropical-like depression. The system them moved south into Libya, making a landfall in Benghazi in the early hours of Sunday.

According to a report by the Arab Regional Weather Center, the presence of a storm with subtropical characteristics at the beginning of July/September in the central Mediterranean Sea is considered a rare event. This means that the subtropical system will be accompanied by warm temperatures, heavy rain, strong winds and waves turbulence. High-speed winds of 49- 74 mph and rains of as much as 50- 250 mm are expected, carrying immense risk of torrential floods. The sea will be rough on the Libyan coast from Ras Lanuf to Derna, with the possibility of limited coastal flooding, according to the Arab Weather Center.