UK offshore oil and gas safety record improving says report
27 Jul 2017
The UK’s offshore oil and gas industry has reported its lowest ever incidence of so-called ‘dangerous occurrences’ since safety records began.
Sector trade body Oil & Gas UK unveiled the figures in its Health & Safety Report 2017. Dangerous occurrences are defined as those incidents which have the potential to cause serious incidents and include oil and gas releases, dropped objects and fires and explosions.
The document also revealed that statistics for 2016 show there were 113 reportable injuries in more than 50 million man-hours worked offshore.
This figure is the second lowest number of reportable injuries since the mid-1990s when the safety regulations came into force.
Effort is paying back in the form of an improving overall performance
Mick Borwell, health, safety and environment policy director, Oil & Gas UK
Further data included in the report shows that:
Six operators had no dangerous occurrences in 2016
Nine operators had no reportable injuries in 2016
Major and significant oil and gas releases are at an all-time low
The three-year average non-fatal injury rate is less than half of construction and transport sectors
Safety critical maintenance backlog is continuing to reduce
Health, safety and environment policy director at Oil & Gas UK, Mick Borwell, said: “Our report reflects the continued industry-wide effort we make to maintain focus on the safety of our people and operations. That effort is paying back in the form of an improving overall performance.
“Process safety incidents – which includes oil and gas releases, fires or explosions and dropped objects – are at the lowest on record. There has been a sustained overall downward trend in the total number of these hydrocarbon releases reported since a peak in 2004. Prevention of releases remains an absolute priority.
“We are also continuing to see reductions in the safety-critical maintenance backlog – an area industry has worked hard to address.”
However, he also acknowledged that 2016 had seen fatalities in both the UK and Norwegian North Sea sectors.
“While these incidents cast a shadow over the year, it is important to recognise where progress has been made," stated Borwell.
Oil & Gas UK health and safety manager Trish Sentance outlines the report’s main findings below:
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