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Notification of order following audit of Yme

Audit: In the period from 16 to 18 December 2009, the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) carried out an audit of preparation for operations, completion, preservation and preparations for maintenance of Yme at the shipyard in Abu Dhabi. Based on our findings during the audit, we have issued a notification of order to Talisman Energy Norge AS (TENAS).


The audit had special focus on how TENAS ensures that Single Buoy Mooring (SBM) as the contractor carries out design and fabrication according to the regulatory requirements within these areas.

The audit was carried out in the form of verifications, random checks on the facility and storage, review of the company's governing documents and procedures, as well as conversations with involved personnel.

Background for the audit
The PSA is to set standards for and follow up to ensure that the players in the petroleum industry maintain high standards as regards health, safety, the environment and preparedness, thereby also contributing towards creating the greatest possible values for the Norwegian society.

The follow-up shall be system-oriented and risk-based, and shall be supplementary to the industry's own follow-up.

The audit is based on guidelines provided in the PSA's main priorities for 2009 relating to follow-up of technical and operational safety. The audit also includes experience from previous audits of TENAS, SBM and the industry in general.

Purpose of the audit
The purpose of the audit was to ensure that TENAS has set up sufficient management systems for the preparation for operations and follow-up, completion, preservation and maintenance preparations of Yme, so that these are in accordance with applicable regulations and recognized standards.

Result of the audit
During the audit, several nonconformities in relation to the regulatory requirements, in addition to nonconformities in relation to the company's own governing documents and procedures, were identified.

This applies particularly to the area of preservation. Some of these items are particularly serious as some have been pointed out during previous audits, but have not been rectified.
When considering the local conditions with sand and dust especially, it is important that good preservation is maintained.

In addition, there was recently a lot of precipitation, without the equipment being sheltered from this. Due to this, some equipment was filled with water.

In and around the facility, sand blasting, grinding, welding, painting and installation work were carried out, without protection of other equipment.

The companies' (TENAS’ and SBM's) various procedures for preservation were very general in nature and were not used extensively.

During the audit we also observed that the module did not appear as maintenance-friendly.

Lack of preservation could cause major financial consequences in that new equipment which has not been used, must be replaced before it can be put into service.

In addition, the project could be delayed and scheduled production start-up not carried out in accordance with specified plans.

The PSA takes a very serious view of the nonconformities identified in this audit, especially considering that the same nonconformities have been pointed out previously, without any noteworthy measures being implemented. 

We also identified potential improvements of a less serious nature this time.

Based on our findings during the audit, we have issued the following notification of order to TENAS:

Pursuant to Section 58 of the Framework Regulations relating to individual decisions, cf. Section 3 of the Management Regulations relating to management of health, environment and safety, the Activities Regulations, Section 22, relating to procedures  and chapter IX relating to maintenance, Talisman Energy Norge AS is ordered to document that preservation of systems and equipment is carried out according to a common and uniform procedure which takes into account the local conditions, cf. the report's chapter 5.

The deadline for complying with the order is set at 15 February 2010. We must be notified when the order has been carried out.

We have asked TENAS to submit any comments regarding the notification by 4 February 2010.

About “orders” vs. “notification of order":
An order is a administrative decision made pursuant to the regulations. Before we issue an order, we usually submit a "notification of order" to the companies involved.

A notification of order is neither a measure nor a warning of sanctions, but part of our administrative process in accordance with the established rules of procedure. The notification is just a first step before an administrative decision is made.
 

Journal 2009/1503 (documents in Norwegian)

Øyvind Midttun, Press contact
Email: oyvind.midttun@ptil.no | +47 51 87 34 77