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Audit of the production facilities on Jotun A

During the period 15 April - 5 May 2005, we conducted an audit of how ExxonMobil safeguards technical and operational barriers in the production facilities on Jotun A. Our main impression is that there is a good technical standard on Jotun A and that the facility is well-maintained.

The audit was kicked off with a meeting with the land organization on 15 April. This was followed by an audit offshore on Jotun A on 27-29 April. Finally, the main points from the offshore summary were presented to the field manager on land on 4 May.

Background for the audit

In recent years, we have seen a number of undesirable incidents with significant accident potential as a consequence of deficiencies in the planning and execution of tasks. Some of the central operational barriers have failed.

We wanted to evaluate how ExxonMobil maintains control over the technical and operational barriers, and to see whether they have good systems and procedures that can be transferred to others.

On 1 July 2002, we sent a letter to the industry in which we asked how the barrier requirements in the new regulations were followed up. The letter constitutes part of the basis for this audit task.

Purpose of the audit

The purpose of the audit was to gain insight into how ExxonMobil identifies the need for, establishes, maintains and further develops the barriers that are necessary in order to maintain an acceptable safety level for operation and maintenance of the production facilities on Jotun.

One of the objectives was to evaluate whether ExxonMobil's follow-up of the technical and operational barriers is in accordance with the regulations. Another objective was to increase general understanding of the barrier concept.

For these purposes, technical barriers means built-in safety and technical safety systems for emegency shutdown and fire and gas detection, fire extinguishing systems, emergency power, etc.

Operational barriers means the systems for maintenance administration and work permits, competence, procedures for blinding and isolation, maintenance of correct operations documents, SJA procedures and pre-job talks, inhibiting logs, etc.

Another objective was to look at how the facilities operate in relation to design criteria, and whether safety preconditions from the design phase have been passed on to the operations phase.

As part of the management loop, we also looked into how improvement measures are identified and implemented, e.g. in connection with undesirable incidents, as well as operations and maintenance.

Result of the audit

The audit was implemented as planned, with good facilitation by ExxonMobil.

The conversations and verifications were carried out in an open and good manner.

Our main impression is that Jotun A is in good technical condition, and that the facilities are well-maintained. Nevertheless, some technical challenges were noted, such as corrosion under insulation.

We also have some comments regarding the operational barriers.

We did not note any serious issues in the category of non-conformities, but did make some observations in the potential for improvement category.

About Jotun


The Joturn field was proven in 1994-1995, and is situated 165 km west of Haugesund. The field has been developed with the Jotun A production facility (production ship) and a normally unmanned wellhead facility (Jotun B).

The facilities are connected by means of pipelines for oil and gas production and water injection. The oil is transported by means of shuttle tankers, while the gas is exported with the aid of a pipeline from Jotun to Statpipe. From 2004, Jotun has received oil and gas from Balder for processing and further transport.

Contact person i the Petroleum Safety Authority
Mike Theiss