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Offshore industry warned over general maintenance negligence

23rd December 2010 | Health and Safety Signs

Posted by Nicole Stevens.

Some offshore firms are neglecting the day-to-day general maintenance of their oil and gas platforms, such as the upkeep of health and safety signage, a new Health and Safety Executive (HSE) report into external corrosion management warns.

From July 2007 to March 2010, investigations carried out by the HSE found that the physical condition of oil platforms varied greatly from "good" to "poor".

The checks looked at management systems for elements judged to be non-critical; such as walkways, stairways, piping, cable trays and valves.

Company attitudes towards maintaining rigs also differed greatly, with some firms taking a proactive approach, others not.

The HSE's head of offshore, Steve Walker, warned that everyday safety must not be ignored as poor maintenance can be a critical factor in serious incidents.

"The management of external corrosion to safety related plant and equipment offshore must not become the "poor relation" offshore," Mr Walker said.

"While we recognise the commitment of companies in preventing any failures that could lead to major incidents offshore, it is essential that they are not neglecting the general fabric of their installations."

The HSE's corrosion management project involved site visits of 30 duty-holders.


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