UK Offshore Drillers Accept Pay Hike And Call Off Strike

UK Offshore Drillers Accept Pay Hike And Call Off Strike
Over 450 offshore drilling and drilling maintenance workers have accepted an improved offer of 10 percent on their rates of payback dated to June 1, 2022.

Over 450 offshore drilling and drilling maintenance workers covered by the United Kingdom Drilling Contractors Association (UKDCA) have accepted an improved offer of 10 percent on their rates of payback dated to June 1, 2022.

“By standing together, Unite's members covered by UKDCA have an improved offer that they are willing to accept.  They showed collective strength and resilience to fight for better pay which they achieved so the planned strikes are now off. Unite is determined to achieve improved pay, terms and conditions for our members and this shows their fight was worth it,” Sharon Graham, Unite general secretary, said.

“Unite members were determined to obtain an improved offer and stuck to their guns. During the first in a series of planned 48-hour stoppages across the North Sea and following further discussions with the UKDCA and Acas an improved offer of 10 percent was tabled, this was put to our members who have accepted the offer. This demonstrates what can be achieved when meaningful negotiations take place and employers listen to what our members are collectively saying, it proves that collective bargaining works for all,” Vic Fraser, Unite industrial officer, added.

Earlier this month, on October 5, London-based union Unite announced that over 300 offshore drilling and contract maintenance workers employed by Archer, Maersk, Transocean, and Odfjell backed strike action.

The mandate for industrial action follows Unite members rejecting a five percent pay offer, Unite noted at the time, adding that the pay dispute involves workers covered by the United Kingdom Drilling Contractors Association (UKDCA).

According to Unite, 95 percent supported strike action in a ballot turnout of 86 percent. The strike action was supposed to start on October 20 and 21 and involve a series of 48-hour stoppages every second week for the first eight weeks. Unite also has warned that the action could escalate to ‘all-out strike action’ if its conditions were not met.

The prospective industrial action was supposed to hit Alba North, Beryl Alpha, Beryl Field, Brae Alpha, Brent Alpha, Captain WPP, Clair, Clair Ridge, Claymore, Cormorant Alpha, Forties Alpha, Forties Delta, Maersk Innovator, Maersk Resolve, Magnus, Mariner, North Cormorant, Paul B. Lloyd Jr, Piper Bravo, Tern Alpha, and Topaz/Cormorant Alpha.

Before the workers agreed on the new conditions, Unite members also supported action short of a strike. Workers planned to ban overtime from October 18, limiting the working day to 12 hours, providing no extra cover during scheduled field breaks, and withdrawing goodwill pre and post-tour briefings, preventing handovers between shifts.

To contact the author, email bojan.lepic@rigzone.com


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