Unite Calls for Safety Transparency After Worker Radiation Exposure Claims
UK union Unite has called for ‘openness and transparency’ on safety incidents offshore, after a group of workers were reported to have been exposed to radiation when carrying out work on EnQuest’s Thistle platform last December.
"Unite believes that the way these workers has been treated is terrible,” Unite Regional Officer John Boland told Rigzone.
"It's vital for workers' safety that there is openness and transparency about serious safety incidents, so that we can learn lessons and create a safer working environment for everyone offshore,” he added.
Rigging supervisor Steve Innes called for action after he and his fellow Wood Group contractors were said to have been exposed to alpha radiation when removing pipework on the Thistle platform, BBC Scotland reported.
Following the claims, the BBC quoted an EnQuest spokesperson as saying that the company has appropriate control measures in place.
"EnQuest can confirm that, in December 2016, during planned shutdown activities on its Thistle platform, six personnel employed by Wood Group under a contract with EnQuest were removing a piece of pipework when they were exposed to low levels of NORM (naturally occurring radioactive material),” the BBC quotes the EnQuest representative as saying.
"The level of exposure was less than one percent of the level at which it is reportable to the Health and Safety Executive, however EnQuest advised the HSE of the matter at the time….EnQuest has appropriate control measures in place which are designed to prevent exposure to NORM,” the representative added.
“Following an investigation, additional precautionary steps have been taken to further ensure that personnel avoid any such exposure,” the spokesperson continued.
EnQuest was not immediately available to provide any comment to Rigzone.
A Wood Group representative is also quoted in the BBC as stating that the health and safety of its people is always its top priority.
Innes said that he would like somebody to take the case on ‘who's not frightened of the companies,’ according to the BBC.
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