Useful notes on the Importance of ice in the sea



Ice in the sea is of great importance in many respects. It is a source, rather a permanent source of danger to navigation. It is, in fact, the danger of floating icebergs to shipping that brought about the formation of the ice patrol. Attention may be drawn to the Titanic disaster that occurred in April 1912.

This was certainly the worst-ever sea tragedy which cost the lives of 1517 passengers aboard. Following the Titanic disaster the U.S. Navy began its ice patrol. In 1914, it became an international patrol.

In addition, the danger to shipping has been mainly responsible for initiating a very sophisticated system of iceberg warning in the seas around Newfoundland, where the icebergs pose greater danger on account of the frequency of dense fogs.

The formation of sea ice renders many sea ports and harbours in the high latitude regions unusable. It is worthwhile to keep in mind that the distribution of sea ice is controlled by climatological processes.

Lastly, the pack ice also poses danger to harbours and ports as they cause their freezing particularly in winter. Sea ice and icebergs dominate ice conditions in the Arctic and the Antarctic, and sometimes they are carried to relatively warmer oceanic regions by ocean currents (cold currents).

This kind of ice drift prolongs the presence of the winter ice on the sea surface in the Polar Regions into spring and even the summer. Thus, it is of considerable importance for shipping.