Maersk Drilling gets safety notice

Maersk Drilling has been hit given a safety notice after two tubular stands, weighing 1,300kg each, fell onto an offshore rig from a working platform (a fingerboard) and across the drill floor of the Maersk Invincible. The incident occurred in November 2018 at the Valhall field off Norway.

Norway’s Petroleum Safety Authority has carried out an investigation, finding the incident was caused by a failure in locking mechanisms in latches on the fingerboard. Although there were people present in the area, no one was hurt as cordons had been put in place when the stands were seen to be in motion. The PSA said the risk assessment, locking mechanisms and experience transfer within the company had all been “inadequate”. The safety body said that it has had initial feedback that measures are being taken to address the issue.

The PSA said “Several incidents involving different types of tubulars falling out of fingerboards have occurred. “The Maersk Invincible accident and earlier incidents demonstrate a need for learning and experience transfer both within and across the companies. “Maersk Drilling has until April 8th to show how it will address the safety breaches. A spokesman for the company said: “We have welcomed the subsequent investigation by the PSA and expect that this focused investigation will provide safety insights to the benefit of the  entire industry. As a result of this, we have taken steps to strengthen the locking mechanism of fingerboards. “Thankfully, none of our employees were in harm’s way, and we note that the PSA has commended our crew for reacting by the book when faced with this situation”, the company said.