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NSOAF puts the focus on safe operations and maintenance.

In 2017 and 2018, NSOAF (North Sea Offshore Authorities Forum), a cooperative forum for the safety agencies of the countries surrounding the North Sea, will be paying particular attention to the safe operation and maintenance of ageing facilities. The aim is to secure the transfer of experience between the countries.

Globally, defective or deficient maintenance has often proved to be a contributory cause of major accidents. It is because of the potential for major accidents that maintenance management in general, and the maintenance of safety-critical equipment in particular, have been given so much emphasis in the petroleum industry in these countries.

Cost cutting
Maintenance management and safe operations are also relevant for the NSOAF countries in the light of the substantial cost reductions the industry is making due to the fall in the oil price. All the member countries have ageing facilities in operation, with the challenges that such facilities represent.

"Maintenance for safe operations" is the theme of the cooperative remit, which has a common basis among the countries. Each country will collect data through a series of audits and each of the audits will be reported individually. Subsequently, the member countries will prepare a joint report, detailing their experiences. This is scheduled to be published in 2018.

The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway is planning three audits relating to this cooperation in 2017. The choice of facilities and participants will be coordinated with our auditing schedules.