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Major accident audit at Kollsnes

Audit: During the period 24-26 June 2008, the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) conducted a major accident audit and an audit of management and follow-up of technical and operational conditions at Gassco AS' facility at Kollsnes. No regulatory nonconformities were identified.

The audit was coordinated with the Norwegian Pollution Control Authority (SFT) so that much of the documentation that formed the basis for the audit could be used by both supervisory authorities, thus enhancing the efficiency of the audit.  The SFT prepares its own audit report for its administrative area.

About the Kollsnes facility
Gas from Kvitebjørn is landed and treated in the NGL facility (Natural Gas Liquid) at Kollsnes in Øygarden municipality in Hordaland county (see photo).

Kollsnes (source: Gassco AS)

The gas is compressed at Kollsnes before it is sent to the Continent. Gassco is the operator of Kollsnes, while Statoil is the technical service provider and is responsible for the daily operation of the facility.

Background for the audit
The PSA sets standards and follows up to ensure that the players in the petroleum activities maintain high health, safety and environment standards, and thereby contributes to creating the greatest possible value for the Norwegian society.

This follow-up shall be system-oriented and risk-based, and it comes in addition to the follow-up carried out by the industry itself.

The audit was based on the regulations relating to measures to prevent and limit the consequences of major accidents in activities where hazardous chemicals are involved (the Major Accident Regulations) as well as requirements in the Temporary regulations related to safety and working environment for certain petroleum facilities on land and associated pipeline systems (the Temporary Regulations) and the Regulations related to systematic health, safety and environment work in enterprises (the Internal Control Regulations)).

Purpose of the audit
The purpose of the audit was to examine whether Gassco AS fulfils the requirements of the Major Accident Regulations, with special attention given to maintenance, specifically evaluations and rankings of systems and equipment, as well as roles and responsibilities in this context.  Another objective was to obtain information about technical and operational conditions in the facility, and how the lifetime of important equipment and components is determined and safeguarded.

The audit covered the following topics and areas:

  • Maintenance and inspection
  • Major accident potential
  • Aging of technical equipment
  • Verifications

Result of the audit
The results are based on the presentations of elements in StatoilHydro (SH) Kollsnes' management systems and conversations with selected personnel, with subsequent verification of governing documents and procedures, as well as the program for implementing maintenance at Kollsnes.

Through the interviews, we gained the impression that the operation depends on capable and experienced "individual operators".

We also gained a positive impression of how SH safeguards applicable governing documents, procedures and the program for implementing maintenance.