BSEE Issues Safety Alert

Monday, April 16, 2012

Recommends Safe Practices to Prevent Falls.


The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) today issued recommendations for safety measures developed from the investigation of an offshore accident which resulted in a fatality. The recommendations are being distributed through a Safety Alert: the safety alert is one of the tools BSEE uses to inform the offshore oil and gas industry of the circumstances surrounding an incident or a near miss.  The alert also contains recommendations that should help prevent the recurrence of such an incident on the Outer Continental Shelf.


The offshore accident which took place in April 2011 involved the lifting and moving of equipment during a decommissioning project. An offshore worker fell through an opening in the deck and suffered fatal injuries. The safety alert resulting from the investigation underscores the important of existing safety requirements and recommends to operators:


• Fall protection such as barricading and vest harnesses should be available and used in the presence of open holes, or if holes may be exposed in the course of an operation;

• any operation used to lift equipment should be evaluated for all risks;

• appropriate tag lines (ropes or straps used to manually control the equipment being moved) and use of these tag lines should be reviewed, and

• medical evacuation procedures and contact should be prominently displayed and all crew members acquainted with that information and the procedures.


“BSEE works to promote safety in all offshore operations. There is no tolerance for those who compromise safety, lax safety requirements can lead to lead a potentially tragic consequences” BSEE Director James Watson said. “The oil and gas industry needs to be vigilant in its attention to safety at all times during every offshore operation.”


BSEE will now consider the panel’s recommendations before taking enforcement actions in this case. Enforcement actions include the issuance of Incidents of Noncompliance as well as assessing civil penalties. To view the safety alert, go to:

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