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Audit - management of third-party equipment on Scarabeo 5

During the period from October to December 2003, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) carried out an audit of the management of third-party equipment and companies on the mobile installation Scarabeo 5.


The audit was conducted by obtaining certain documentation describing how third-party equipment and companies are handled on Scarabeo 5.

Based on the documentation received, lists of questions were submitted to Statoil and Saipem for their response on factors relating to the handling of third-party equipment and personnel on the installation.

After the companies' replies were received, a meeting was held with representatives of Statoil and Saipem to clarify certain matters that the companies had responded to.

After this meeting, replies have been received from the companies regarding certain issues that were still outstanding.

Background for the audit

The NPD participates in the North Sea Offshore Authorities Forum (NSOAF) in which it was decided that, for mobile installations, each country (Norway, Denmark, the United Kingdom, Germany and the Netherlands) would in 2003 conduct an audit task entitled "Management of requirements related to third-party equipment, follow-up and training".

The NPD selected Maersk and Saipem as the subjects of this audit activity. As regards Saipem, the audit was aimed at management of third-party equipment and companies on Scarabeo 5.

The audit activity relates to both the drilling contractor and the operator, and it was therefore implemented vis-à-vis the respective operations organizations in Statoil (Kristin) and Saipem.

Purpose of the audit

In an NSOAF context, all countries carry out their respective activities based on their national regulatory regimes.

This means that this audit was conducted on the basis of the NPD's HSE regulations. Important areas to follow up have included the following:

  • Evaluate the companies' management system as regards handling of third-parties with particular emphasis on description of and compliance with the roles and responsibilities of the various players.

  • Verify that testing, operation and maintenance of third-party equipment is safeguarded.

  • Verify that the education and training requirements as regards third-party personnel are safeguarded.

In addition to following up to ensure that the companies comply with the regulatory requirements, one of the purposes of the task will also be to use the results to enhance understanding and practical implementation of the various regulations across national borders in the North Sea Basin.

A joint report outlining experiences and recommendations from NSOAF will be available after the national audit activities are completed.

Result of the audit

Statoil's system for handling third-party equipment is adapted to equipment sent from the coastal base to the company's own permanent installations, and not to drilling rigs such as the Scarabeo 5 where the drilling contractor's management system applies.

It was noted that when the company checks the equipment upon receipt at the coastal base, the database described in the company's management system is not used if the equipment is to be sent to Scarabeo 5.

The company should therefore consider whether the inspection carried out by the supplier or at the coastal base is satisfactory.

Handling (initial inspection, installation and hook-up) of third-party equipment on the installation is largely dealt with by Saipem, while operation and maintenance are the responsibility of the service company.

The descriptions of roles and responsibilities in this context should be improved in Saipem's management system.

The service company has the primary responsibility for ensuring that maintenance and testing of third-party equipment is safeguarded in accordance with the regulations.

The description of Statoil's and Saipem's roles and responsibilities as regards follow-up should be improved.

Since the NPD has not carried out verifications on the installation during the task, no conclusions can be drawn as to whether testing, operation and maintenance of equipment on the installation is handled in accordance with the applicable requirements and descriptions.

Contact person in the PSA:
Mike Theiss