Petrobras: Brazil Rig Accident Kills 1, Injures 2

RIO DE JANEIRO (Dow Jones Newswires), Dec. 28, 2011

Brazilian state-controlled oil and gas producer Petroleo Brasileiro SA (PBR, PETR4.BR) said a worker died and two were slightly injured in an accident on the company's PUB-03 oil rig in offshore waters in Rio Grande do Norte state, northeast Brazil on the night of Dec. 26.

The workers fell onto the rig's deck while they were boarding the rig from a boat that had brought them to the site, Petrobras said in a statement.

Petrobras said it has set up a technical committee to investigate the causes of the accident, which has been officially communicated to the civil police and the National Petroleum Agency, or ANP, Brazil's oil industry regulator. 

Copyright (c) 2011 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.


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Ricardo | Jan. 5, 2012
Petrobras will not be charged or fined as they are the national oil company. Others are held to a higher standard.

Paul Liberato | Jan. 3, 2012
Trent, I assume you mean by no "personnel basket transfers"- that rigs and platforms will become unmanned. Because if you mean only use helicopters you may want to read the following report. A new study by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy finds that helicopters that service the drilling platforms and vessels in the Gulf of Mexico crash on average more than six times per year resulting in an average of 5 deaths per year. Since 1983 there have been 178 crashes with 139 deaths in the Gulf. Analyses determined that the most common result of mechanical failure in both fatal and nonfatal crashes was loss of engine power, which occurred in almost one-third of fatal crashes. * *ScienceDaily Sept. 12, 2011

Dear Farrel! Any accident is unfortunate for the Drilling people. We have seen a lot and even with best HSE procedures and inspection methods/schedule it always happen as a unexpected event. Hence in October 1999, when we dropped the BOP at 1610 m at Block 17 off Angola, the drilling line was ok, inspected , cut as per procedure but then? Thank God that nobody was hurt that day, the event could have been interpreted as Pride Intl was careless in tems of HSE. It is a matter of Day, Hour, minute and seconds and some other condition may very well favour the occurence of such accidents/incidents. We had the same history in Malongo with Foramer tender barge, the basket was ok, lifting procedure ok, the swells played the major role as personnel were dropped killed early in the morning. Kind regards, Jose

muh mansyah | Dec. 30, 2011
Why this company without any check and follow with the requlation during travelling ( make Basket trasfer or something ) , hopefully in the future without any case same like this . Please you follow with Safety rule , where you job , stay or other " today can be better with yesterday .

L. Thomas | Dec. 30, 2011
Ron Heffernan wrote: "I think they should be fined the same amount as Chevron $5.8 B as they never killed anyone." Wow! That statements reflects some extremely bizarre logic, and it depends upon a couple of unstated assumptions, such as: 1) Petrobras was 100% at fault in this incident? Perhaps this will eventually be proven (or not), but in fact, the article provides only the most minimal description of the accident and it establishes nothing about fault. It may have even been the unfortunate deceased workers fault, for all we know at this point. However, if Ron has some "inside" information on who is responsible, he has not yet chosen to share this news scoop with us. 2) Chevron/Texaco didnt kill anyone? Texaco "may" not have murdered anyone in cold blood, but the environmental disaster that Texaco so cynically caused in Ecuadors rainforest, it sure to have killed and maimed hundreds, or even thousands, of people and animals in this area. And this careless dumping of oil waste is sure to cause even more terrible harm for many years to come. Texaco dumped this oil waste in a way that would have never been allowed in any country with environmental safeguards. This crude dumping method for oil waste water was not being practiced anywhere else in the world (and Texaco knew this). Texaco apparently decided to save a few dollars by cynically taking very cruel advantage of some inexperienced and inept government regulators in Ecuador. But the people who paid the price were not the regulators, they were some of the poorest, and most nearly powerless people in Ecuador (one of the poorer nations in South America). Its the "nearly powerless" part that has come back, after all these years, to bite Chevron corporation, which later purchased all of Texaco corporation, thus acquiring Texacos debts and liabilities (like this one) along with their assets. Chevrons lawyers had originally thought that they could easily have their way in any trial within the Ecuadoran Court system (money talks and...) and they demanded that the case be heard in Ecuador. But Chevron apparently ran into some unexpected problems down in Ecuador, when they encountered some locally important people who actually cared about the terrible damage inflicted on their country and their people. Suddenly the Chevron legal strategy flipped over and became an urgent plea to have the trial taken out of the biased Court in the Ecuadoran rainforest, and heard in downtown New York City, where people understood big money and its needs, and where they werent so obsessed with "justice" for simple people living in the Amazon jungle.

Daniel Keller | Dec. 30, 2011
Same thing everywhere. Ensco, Transocean, all of them. Total disregard for safety.

Bernard | Dec. 29, 2011
Safety is a lot more then a nice speech and a fancy HSE management system on the intranet of one's corporation. If good HSE practices are not embeded into the workers' culture this and other tragic stories will continue to be shared. Share the HSE culture and ensure all employees live these values. My sincere sorrow for this person's family and all that have lost their life while attempting to do their jobs. It's all about the people and always will be!

trent | Dec. 29, 2011
there is a day and age were there should be no personel basket transfers to and from any rig.

Ron heffernan | Dec. 29, 2011
I think they should be fined the same amount as Chevron $5.8 B as they never killed anyone.

Farell Moughon | Dec. 28, 2011
1. Were personnel briefed on safety and procedures before the lift? 2. Had lifting equipment been inspected before the lift?

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