PSA Provides Follow-up on Snorre A Incident

Snorre Field, North Sea
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As a consequence of the incident that occurred on Snorre A on November 28, 2004, the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) has determined that the preconditions for operation stipulated in the consent for the installation are no longer fulfilled. Prior to start-up of the installation, Statoil must present an overall assessment of how safe start-up and operation will be accomplished.

This emerges from a letter the PSA sent to Statoil ASA on Thursday, December 2nd. The letter emphasizes that the PSA will spend some time reviewing the presented and submitted information before issuing a formal response regarding start-up. The PSA also wants the licensees* to be involved in Statoil's process to develop a position on, and clearer preconditions for, further operations. The PSA may also hold a meeting including the licensees before we give a formal response regarding start-up.

Mandate for the investigation group

Our own investigation group has started its work, in parallel with the PSA's follow-up of Statoil's work to normalize well 34/7-P-31A on Snorre A.

In addition to mapping the chain of events, the investigation group will seek to identify triggering and underlying causes, with focus on man, technology and organization (MTO). The investigation group will also map and evaluate emergency preparedness factors, including an assessment of the incident's potential.

The investigation group will also identify any violations of the regulations, recommend additional follow-up and identify any potential need for applying policy instruments. The work will be summarized in an investigation report.

* In addition to Statoil, which is the operator, the following companies are licensees in the Snorre field:
  • Enterprise Oil Norge AS
  • Amerada Hess Norge AS
  • Total E&P Norge AS
  • RWE Dea Norge AS
  • Idemitsu Petroleum Norge AS
  • ExxonMobil Exploration and Production Norway AS
  • Norsk Hydro Produksjon AS
  • Petoro AS

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