PSA investigates serious lifting incident on Deepsea Atlantic

An investigation has been launched by the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) into a serious incident which occurred on the Deepsea Atlantic drilling rig on 10 August.

During lifting, a length of conductor casing weighing roughly seven tonnes fell about six metres onto the catwalk. One person was standing on the drill floor about six meters away, but nobody was injured.

This incident occurred at 9:25 p.m. while the rig, which is operated by Odfjell Drilling AS, was working for StatoilHydro on the Gullfaks South field. The PSA was notified at 10:10 p.m.

The elevator opened while lifting the first length of 30-inch casing from its horizontal position on the catwalk to vertical, causing the top end of the pipe to fall.

Since the bottom end of the casing had not lifted clear when the incident occurred, the measured weight on the lifting block at that point was three tonnes. The operation immediately ceased.

The PSA has appointed a three-member investigation team which travelled out to Deepsea Atlantic on Aug. 11. Its attention will be primarily focused on drilling contractor Odfjell Drilling.

Aims of this investigation include clarifying the sequence of events and identifying direct and underlying causes. The work will lead to a report, which will be published on the PSA website.


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