NPD Issues Order Following Lifting Accident

On March 19th a roustabout was crushed during a lifting operation on Scarabeo 6. When the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate became aware of the incident, the rig owner, Saipem, was immediately given an order to stop all crane and lifting operations until adherence with current regulatory requirements could be verified. The NPD is concerned that serious incidents related to crane and lifting operations continue to occur.

The incident on Scarabeo 6 occurred while the installation was working for TotalFinaElf on the Skirne field. During a lifting operation a container slid towards the roustabout who was stationed as a flagman. The roustabout was struck by the container, but did not sustain physical injuries. However, the incident could have had a far more serious outcome.

After the incident the NPD ordered all activities on Scarabeo 6 to be stopped temporarily, and an investigation group from TotalFinaElf and Saipem went offshore. The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate did not send out its own investigation group, but the circumstances surrounding the incident indicate clear breaches of the regulatory requirements on Scarabeo 6.

On this basis the NPD sent a order on March 20th to immediately stop all crane and lifting operations until Saipem could verify that lifting procedures on Scarabeo 6 meet the requirements of the Activities Regulations, and that "personnel with responsibility for crane and lifting operations, both supervisory and working personnel, have the necessary competence, particularly with regard to the lifting procedures, to be able to carry out the activities in a safe manner".

In an e-mail of March 22nd to the NPD, Saipem gave an account of measures implemented in cooperation with TotalFinaElf following the incident to ensure that crane and lifting operations are carried out in an acceptable manner as regards safety.

On the basis of these immediate measures, Saipem, in cooperation with TotalFinaElf, has found conditions to be acceptable as regards safety, and has thus resumed operations on board Scarabeo 6.


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