Viking in "North Pole driller thriller"News // September 17, 2004
The vessel had to race against time to raise the drill bit from nearly 900ft below the seabed in order to avoid an ice sheet "the size of a terrace of houses" bearing down on them.
If the drill had not been removed in time it would have snapped as the Vidar Viking was moved out of the exact position by the wall of ice more than 16ft thick.
The Viking was victorious, but with only minutes to spare, with Dan Evans,Science Manager of the European Consortium for Ocean Drilling Research, telling the Scotsman newspaper: "The ice conditions do change fairly rapidly."
Another risk of working in this hazardous area are Polar bears - the sides of the drill ship are low enough for the bears to climb in - however it wouldseem a quick blast of the vessel's horn is enough to scare off the Arcticpredators.