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Order to carry out an overall assessment of means of evacuation

The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) has ordered Odfjell Drilling AS (Odfjell) and Seadrill Management AS (Seadrill) to carry out an overall assessment of means of evacuation.


In April of this year, the PSA issued a notification of order to 22 operating companies and shipping companies relating to carrying out an overall assessment of means of evacuation and to establish an action plan to remedy any deficiencies. In June, the PSA received responses from the companies, all of which confirmed that such a plan had been prepared. Therefore, there was no basis for an order.

Read more: Requirement for an overall assessment of means of evacuation - feedback regarding notification of order

Subsequent meetings have been carried out with a limited number of players to follow up the received answers. For example, meetings were held with drilling contractors Odfjell and Seadrill.

Odfjell
During the meeting with Odfjell we learned, among other things, that the company has not assessed the propulsion system on each individual lifeboat on each of the facilities for which it is responsible. This analysis is essential for evaluating whether a lifeboat can be deemed accessible so that it complies with requirements in Section 68 litera d of the Activities Regulations.

Seadrill
Following the meeting with Seadrill, we concluded that the planned measures appear inadequate to achieve a comprehensive overview of the issue and safeguard the necessary measures before the winter season. For example, propulsion and operational limitations for conventional boats have not been assessed, and MOB-boats have not been included in the assessment. 

Not carried out
In this connection, the PSA also references interpretations dated 26 May 2010, Evacuation and means of evacuation – supplementary information on the regulations. The document provides detailed information on the interpretation of available lifeboats and handling of situations where lifeboats or lifeboat seats are unavailable.

On this basis, it is the PSA's assessment that Odfjell and Seadrill have not carried out an overall assessment of means of evacuation, cf. notification of order dated 23 April 23.4.2010.

With a basis in this, and in accordance with the notification of order, we have issued the following order:

Order to Odfjell:
"Pursuant to Section 68 of the Activities Regulations regarding handling of hazard and accident situations, Section 8 of the Framework Regulations regarding prudent operations and Section 17, first subsection of the Framework Regulations regarding general requirements for material and information, cf. Section 58 of the Framework Regulations relating to individual decisions, Odfjell Drilling is ordered to:

1. With a basis in information from project work in OLF (Norwegian Oil Industry Association) and NR (Norwegian Shipowners' Association) as well as Norsok R-002, to carry out a documented overall assessment of the opportunities for evacuation from its own facilities compared with regulatory requirements and seen in light of the information and knowledge that has emerged in the afore-mentioned the projects, including an analysis of propulsion for each lifeboat on each facility that Odfjell is responsible for.

2. Establish a schedule with measures for improving conditions identified in Item 1, which are not in accordance with regulatory requirements.

The action plan with necessary compensating measures shall be developed so as to bring the responsible party into compliance with the afore-mentioned regulatory requirements for evacuation before the coming winter season and safeguard the requirements related to safely, quickly and efficiently evacuating the facilities' personnel at any given time and under any conditions.

The deadline for complying with the order is set at 31 August 2010. We must be notified when the order has been carried out."

Order to Seadrill:
Pursuant to Section 68 of the Activities Regulations relating to handling of hazard and accident situations, Section 8 of the Framework Regulations relating to prudent operations and Section 17, first subsection of the Framework Regulations relating to general requirements for materials and information, cf. Section 58 of the Framework Regulations relating to individual decisions, Seadrill is ordered to:

1. With a basis in information from project work in OLF and NR as well as Norsok R-002, to carry out a documented overall assessment of the opportunities for evacuation from its own facilities compared with regulatory requirements and seen in light of the information and knowledge that has emerged in the afore-mentioned projects.

2. Establish a schedule with measures for improving conditions identified in Item 1, which are not in accordance with regulatory requirements.

The action plan with necessary compensating measures shall be developed so as to bring the responsible party into compliance with the afore-mentioned regulatory requirements for evacuation before the coming winter season, and safeguard the requirements related to safely, quickly and efficiently evacuating the facilities' personnel at any given time and under any conditions.

The deadline for complying with the order is set at 31 August 2010. We must be notified when the order has been carried out."


Explanations of the terms "order" and "notification of order

An order is an individual decision made pursuant to the regulations. Before we issue an order, we usually send a "notification of order" to the affected companies.

A notification of order is neither a policy instrument nor a warning of sanctions, but an element in our case processing by which we request that the player assess the factual basis. The notification is just a first step before an individual decision is made.

An order is a strongly preventive policy instrument which is legally binding for the recipient.

 

Inger Anda, Director for communication and public affairs
Email: inger.anda@ptil.no | +47 970 54 064