Measures to be Implemented in Response to Kristin Accident

The accident occurred on January 31, 2005 at 06:34, when an employee of Dalseide & Fløysand Group AS was caught in a hydraulically operated, watertight sliding door of a watertight hull bulkhead of the Kristin platform, which was moored at Aker Stord. The man died at Haukeland University Hospital in Bergen that evening at approximately 18:30 from the injuries sustained in the accident.

The committee appointed to investigate the fatal accident concluded that the accident was caused by two factors: an unexpected closure of the sliding door, due to a broken spring in the mechanism that opens and closes the door, and a failure to ensure an adequate passageway before entering, a failure which had become established site practice.

"Such accidents are not supposed to occur. Corrective measures were implemented at the Kristin project, and Statoil and Aker Kvaerner will make sure that the lessons learned from this accident will be communicated to other installations and projects," says Nina Udnes Tronstad, Statoil's Vice President for the Kristin field development.

Employee safety efforts are top priority for the companies involved in the Kristin project. All recommendations presented in the investigation committee's report are carefully reviewed by the companies, each of which will ensure that all necessary measures are introduced at their facilities and worksites.

"Employee safety must come before anything else," says Tor Saltvold, Managing Director of Dalseide & Fløysand Group AS.

Several measures were implemented before hull work resumed: Guards were posted at all doors of this type. New signs with operating instructions were mounted by all doors. Doors were tested to ensure proper functioning, and the maintenance program for sliding doors was revised.

Watertight sliding doors are an absolute necessity onboard floating installations. The most important long-term measure to avoid similar accidents is specific training in the use and potential dangers of such watertight doors. A measure under consideration is providing a mechanical barrier that would prevent anyone from passing through such doorways before they fully open. Appropriate instructions would be posted as part of installing a barrier. Also under consideration is locking the doors in an open position when large offshore platforms such as Kristin are docked, when there is a great deal of activity on board and considerable foot traffic through the watertight bulkhead doorways.

The committee investigating the fatal accident comprised representatives from Aker Kvaerner, Statoil, and Dalseide & Fløysand Group AS. Along with determining exactly what occurred and why, the committee made recommendations for preventing similar accidents and for passing on the hard-learned lessons about doorway dangers and safety measures to other installations and projects.

"Safe operations are vital to our work. We must learn from this accident to prevent the occurance of similar ones," says Simen Lieungh, Aker Kvaerner Executive Vice President, Field Development Europe.