Ammunition surplus: once the threat to enemies, today
the threat to possessor
Unplanned Explosions at Munitions Sites (UEM...
Agenda
• UEMS risk index (statistical data)
• UEMS the cost and consequences
• Ammunition depot as a source of
illegal amm...
UEMS - statistical data in the period 1979 to 2013,
Ref: Handbook Unplanned Explosions at Munitions Sites (UEMS) Excess St...
Statistical data of UEMS
Table Number of UEMS by year and casualties, 2002 - 2011
Years Total Fatalities Injured
2002 20 1...
Number of Exploded Sites is larger than number of UEMS
(examples are Novobohdanivka in Ukraine and Pugachevo in Russia
UEMS Risk Index Probability & Severity
UEMS the cost and consequences
• Lost in humans and injured
• Damage to civilian infrastructure
• Humanitarian crises, hum...
Ammunition depot as a source of
illegal ammunition
Explosion rocks Libyan airbase
• Another Libyan ammunition depot blew-u...
Turkey: explosion at military depot in
Afyonkarahisar
• The explosion occurred at 21:15 local time on 5 September 2012 in
...
Turkey: ammunition storage
bunkers are orientated towards and close to public road
and civilian infrastructure
Afyonkarahisar Ammunition stock in the nearby
bunker after explosion
Ammunition Mismanagement at military depot in
Afyonkarahisar : reference previous slides
• Ammunition stock is too high,
•...
Cypriot authorities confiscated containers in February 2009 from a
ship sailing off and stored near the Vasilikos power pl...
AE filled 98 containers sitting next to the Power Station
No QD requirements meet or risk assessment done
Superiors were i...
Cyprus: UEMS the price
13 killed
62 Injured
Blackout in half of the
country
Cost: EUR 2 billion
Defence and Foreign
Minist...
Congo-Brazzaville
• On 4 March 2012, a series of blasts occurred at an army
arms dump in Brazzaville, the capital of the R...
Congo-Brazzaville
before explosion
Congo-Brazzaville before explosion;
ammunition depot located in the city
Congo-Brazzaville ammunition
depot after explosion
Congo-Brazzaville after explosion
Congo-Brazzaville national disaster
because of absent of PSSM
Congo-Brazzaville example of basic risk assessment
process takes just to open site, move with cursor to the location and e...
AA&E Management
Source of technical informations
• United Nations Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous
Goods...
The most active organizations in PSSM
AA&E Management levels
• National level:
– Stakeholders and policies
– National Safety Authorities on Ammunition (to appro...
Thank you for your attention
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Blaz Mihelic, Ministry of Defence of Slovenia

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"Controlling the tools of violence"
Regional Review Conference on the Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development
Geneva, Switzerland | 8-9 July 2014

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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Blaz Mihelic, Ministry of Defence of Slovenia

  1. 1. Ammunition surplus: once the threat to enemies, today the threat to possessor Unplanned Explosions at Munitions Sites (UEMS) - case studies Prepared by Blaz Mihelic 7-9 July 2014, Geneva, Swiss
  2. 2. Agenda • UEMS risk index (statistical data) • UEMS the cost and consequences • Ammunition depot as a source of illegal ammunition • UEMS case studies – Turkey – Afyonkarahisar – Cyprus – Naval base – Congo – Brazzaville • UEMS basic risk assessment • Recommendations
  3. 3. UEMS - statistical data in the period 1979 to 2013, Ref: Handbook Unplanned Explosions at Munitions Sites (UEMS) Excess Stockpiles as Liabilities rather than Assets; Edited by Eric G. Berman and Pilar Reina; Small Arms Survey, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva 2014, First published in June 2014
  4. 4. Statistical data of UEMS Table Number of UEMS by year and casualties, 2002 - 2011 Years Total Fatalities Injured 2002 20 1182 5787 2003 29 181 322 2004 20 1195 1683 2005 21 108 417 2006 21 54 174 2007 25 169 716 2008 25 55 340 2009 30 67 366 2010 31 148 277 2011 40 383 1944 Grand Total 262 3542 12026 Source: Small Arms Survey Prepared by: Pilar REINA, 10 November 2012. UEMS probability estimated by historical model PEvent = (26.2/(1930 x 0.4) = 0.0339 = 3.39 x 10-2 (3.39%)
  5. 5. Number of Exploded Sites is larger than number of UEMS (examples are Novobohdanivka in Ukraine and Pugachevo in Russia
  6. 6. UEMS Risk Index Probability & Severity
  7. 7. UEMS the cost and consequences • Lost in humans and injured • Damage to civilian infrastructure • Humanitarian crises, humans displaces • Clean-up operation cost: surface, subsurface, water coved area • The overall cost of the incident • Lost in ammunition and military infrastructure • UEMS contaminated sites are: – Potential source of explosives and ammunition – attractive for terrorist and illegal trading – UXOs attractive for locals as a source for income by collecting metal scrap (brass, copper., steel etc.) many locals including kids were killed or injured years after event – Handling & disposal of UXOs found in UEMS affected areas is more hazard and costly in comparison with disposal of stockpiled ammunition – UEMS affected areas are rarely secured (fenced and guarded)
  8. 8. Ammunition depot as a source of illegal ammunition Explosion rocks Libyan airbase • Another Libyan ammunition depot blew-up Monday (December 9th 2013). • Some 50 criminals were behind the explosion at the tank ammunition storage site at the Brak al- Shatie airbase, 650 kilometers south of Tripoli, a Sebha security source said. • Thieves hoping to steal copper from destroyed ammunition reportedly poured gasoline on the arms depot in the morning. Overheating in the afternoon caused rockets and shells to ignite • Four base guards were injured, two of them seriously. They were transferred to Tripoli for treatment. • The attack is the second of its type targeting the same bunker in less than two weeks. • Thirty people died in a blast at the airbase on November 28th. The explosion occurred when a group attempted to steal copper from the site. Victims of the explosion included African migrants.
  9. 9. Turkey: explosion at military depot in Afyonkarahisar • The explosion occurred at 21:15 local time on 5 September 2012 in Afyonkarahisar, Turkey. According to the Turkey Armed Forces 25 servicemen died, four other soldiers and three civilians were injured by the accident • Accident happened in uncertain circumstances. One of the potential reasons for the accident is poor ammunition management system. • Comments of Turkey gen: The stock check should not have been conducted at night and that the number of soldiers involved in the procedure at Afyonkarahisar seemed to be too high.
  10. 10. Turkey: ammunition storage bunkers are orientated towards and close to public road and civilian infrastructure
  11. 11. Afyonkarahisar Ammunition stock in the nearby bunker after explosion
  12. 12. Ammunition Mismanagement at military depot in Afyonkarahisar : reference previous slides • Ammunition stock is too high, • Unstable stock / stock is under angle, • Stock is placed wall to wall (no isle), • Ammunition boxes are laying on the floor, • Boxes are touching ceiling, • Ammunition boxes are not palletized, • Stock is close to the entry door, • Ammunition boxes are not connected, • Ammunition stock list is missing, • UN marking system on boxes is missing, • Doors are probably not blast resistant - certified. • QD distances between PES and ES at storage site are questionable, • Doors on bunkers are oriented to exposed sites: civilian buildings, roads or bunkers
  13. 13. Cypriot authorities confiscated containers in February 2009 from a ship sailing off and stored near the Vasilikos power plant the largest electricity and drinking water production facility
  14. 14. AE filled 98 containers sitting next to the Power Station No QD requirements meet or risk assessment done Superiors were ignored warnings by local commander
  15. 15. Cyprus: UEMS the price 13 killed 62 Injured Blackout in half of the country Cost: EUR 2 billion Defence and Foreign Ministers Resigned
  16. 16. Congo-Brazzaville • On 4 March 2012, a series of blasts occurred at an army arms dump in Brazzaville, the capital of the Republic of the Congo. At least 250 people were killed by the explosions. Additional bodies were said to be "unfindable.“ Among the dead were six Chinese workers from a Beijing Construction Engineering Group work site close to the armory. Interior Minister Raymond Mboulou said that nearby hospitals were overflowing with injuries, with many wounded lying in hallways due to lack of space. Total injures exceeded 2,300. More than 13,800 people were left homeless. One survivor described the event as feeling like "the apocalypse; others described it as "like a tsunami or earthquake.
  17. 17. Congo-Brazzaville before explosion
  18. 18. Congo-Brazzaville before explosion; ammunition depot located in the city
  19. 19. Congo-Brazzaville ammunition depot after explosion
  20. 20. Congo-Brazzaville after explosion
  21. 21. Congo-Brazzaville national disaster because of absent of PSSM
  22. 22. Congo-Brazzaville example of basic risk assessment process takes just to open site, move with cursor to the location and enter amount of explosives, result is for illustrative purpose only http://www.un.org/disarmament/un-saferguard/map/ • Explosives & ammunition 10.000 kg class 1.1 (as example) • VBD Vulnerable Building Distance (Purple line) • IBD Inhibited Building Distance (Yellow line) • PTRD Public Traffic Route Distance
  23. 23. AA&E Management Source of technical informations • United Nations Committee of Experts on the Transport of Dangerous Goods and on the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals • United Nations Safer Guard Program & International Ammunition Technical Guidelines (IATG) • OSCE Handbook of Best Practices on Conventional Ammunition • Regional Ammunition Stockpile Reduction (RASR) • European Network of National Safety Authorities on Ammunition (ENNSA) • CNAD AMMUNITION SAFETY GROUP (AC/326) / NATO Munitions Safety Information Analysis Center (MSIAC)
  24. 24. The most active organizations in PSSM
  25. 25. AA&E Management levels • National level: – Stakeholders and policies – National Safety Authorities on Ammunition (to approve risk assessment for each PES) – Laboratories and testing centers • MOD: – Organization structure – Developed directives and regulations – Qualified personnel (trained & certified) – Personnel-command responsibility – Risk assessment and personnel responsibility (all levels) – QA/QC (all levels) • AA&E duties (Logistic and EOD): – ESO, ATO, AT, Ammunition Handler, etc
  26. 26. Thank you for your attention

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