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What is a containment boom?


A containment boom is a temporary floating barrier used to contain oil spills & loose debris on surface water. Booms are used to reduce the pollution of shorelines, rivers, oceans, and other waterways. The thick surface layers collect oil, which allows for easy recovery.

Each type of containment boom offers a unique set of abilities. These abilities range from deployment terms, robustness, specific area of use, buoyancy ratio and portability.

There are several types of booms available such as permanent, fence, curtain, air, silt & absorbent booms. Each has different uses from others with varying pros & cons. They all have a high UV resistance allowing for long-term uses without the concern of decay.

Types of Booms

Absorbent Boom

Ideal for light debris or when you want to recover the spill mechanically.

By deploying the containment boom with the absorbent facing the spill you can contain and absorb it or by deploying with the face of the boom away from the spill it will act as a containment boom.


Air Boom

Typically deployed from response vessels where a foam-filled boom would be too bulky, the reduced volume of an air-filled containment boom is also an asset when they have to be transported to a new location and are ideal for open water where the high buoyancy-to-weight ratio assists the performance in the waves. They have excellent UV resistance and chemical resistance to acids, alkalis, solvents and hydrocarbons.         

Curtain Boom

Not only ideal for use on calm or “protected” water, curtain booms are also easy and convenient to deploy and store in a storage container.

With a high buoyancy-to-weight ratio this containment boom has a good response to wave action making it useful in inland or sheltered water such as within a harbour. The range has excellent UV resistance and chemical resistance to acids, alkalis, solvents and hydrocarbons.


Fence Boom

Lightweight and easy to use this containment boom is ideal for deploying from a reel and takes up very little space when stored or when being transported to a new location. Fence booms are not recommended for towing or sweeping at sea.         

Permanent Boom

Suitable for long-term deployment. This containment boom is robust and hard-wearing with floatation provided by rigid foam-filled floats bolted to the skirt which is naturally rigid helping it stay upright in the water. Ballast is provided by a metal chain attached to the bottom edge.


Silt Boom

A Silt Containment Boom is designed to prevent silt contamination of waterways caused by manmade or natural erosion. These fast to assemble and deploy booms are ideal for sheltered and inland waters. Because the geotextile skirts are prone to wear and tear you can purchase new skirts as a separate item if required.         

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