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Audit of maintenance management in Aker Well Service AS

Audit: During the period 17 - 18 February 2010, the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) conducted an audit of the maintenance management in Aker Well Service (AWS). We identified seven nonconformities in relation to the regulatory requirements, but noted that processes were implemented to improve the company's maintenance management.

Background for the audit
The PSA is to set standards for, and follow up to ensure that the players in the petroleum activities maintain high standards as regards health, safety and the environment, thereby 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.

Chapter 4.12.2  of the Storting White Paper No. 7 (2001-2002) relating to health, safety and environment in the petroleum activities, states, inter alia, the following regarding maintenance management:

"The authorities are of the opinion that it is necessary to further develop management models for operations and maintenance in cooperation with the industry in order to ensure a joint effort to strenghten the quality of maintenance in the petroleum activities through, inter alia, development of methods and technologies, competence enhancement and research."

The Storting White Paper No. 12 (2005-2006) relating to health, safety and the environment in the petroleum activities, indicates in Chapter 5.4 that deficient maintenance may increase the risk of major accidents, injuries and incidents, and the White Paper refers to a rather comprehensive review of audit reports which show a relatively large share of nonconformities in relation to the regulatory requirements.

These include deficiencies in the prioritising of the maintenance, evaluation of critical conditions, follow-up of temporary equipment, unsatisfactory documentation and outstanding maintenance of safety-critical  equipment.

Moreover, in some cases the competence relating to maintenance management was inadequate.

Current requirements related to maintenance management are stipulated specifically in the Activities Regulations and the Management Regulations.

Purpose of the audit
The purpose of the audit was to

  •  investigate whether AWS performs classification of equipment in accordance with current regulatory requirements and accepted standards, cf. Chapter IX of the Activities Regulations relating to maintenance
  • assess AWS' use of this classification in their maintenance management
  • investigate the basis for analyses relating to maintenance decisions

Result of the audit
The results are based on the presentation of elements in AWS' management systems and interviews with selected personnel, primarily the owners of the maintenance process, with a subsequent verification of governing documents and systems for carrying out maintenance on the company's facilities in Norway.

AWS does not fulfil all the requirements of the regulations relating to maintenance management.

Some of our observations are characterised as nonconformities, cf. the classification in Chapter 5, and are grouped in the following main categories:

  • Marking and classification of systems equipment
  • Documentation of the classification carried out
  • Use of classification as a basis for selecting and prioritising maintenance
  • Maintenance programme
  • Maintenance status
  • Maintenance efficiency
  • Governing documents

Journal 2010/72 (documents in Norwegian)