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Deepwater Horizon disaster: Focus areas for the PSA after Salazar report

The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) has now established a framework for reviewing US government findings on the Deepwater Horizon accident with an eye to possible consequences for Norway.


This follows the publication on 15 June of the PSA’s preliminary conclusions on the report from Ken Salazar, the US secretary of the interior, into the incident in the Gulf of Mexico (link to the report).

Comparisons covering the report’s 21 recommendations showed that almost all of them are already met by Norway’s regulations. But the PSA decided to take a closer look at four-five of the points.

These have now been fully specified, and the PSA has resolved to initiate analyses of the following areas relating to Norway’s oil sector.

  • Well integrity, including:
    • organisational factors, such as education, training and qualifications of personnel performing critical functions in planning and executing well operations
    • operational and technical management systems for well control
    • operational and maintenance requirements for blowout preventers (BOPs), and existing systems for setting BOP certification requirements will also be assessed
  • Well design and construction

    Part of this work will be conducted in cooperation with the Well Integrity Forum (WIF), which was established on the PSA’s initiative in 2006. Subordinated to the Norwegian Oil Industry Association (OLF), this forum has already worked on the number of the issues outlined above. (Link to relevant article)
     
  • Emergency preparedness and response principles relevant to halting a possible subsea blowout in Norway.
    (Link to article)

See the mandate for the PSA’s project team in the wake of Deepwater Horizon (link).