Equinor – Visund – Technical Condition, Organizational Robustness

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 6/17/2021, Location: Europe

The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) has carried out an audit of Equinor and their management of the technical condition, organizational robustness and working environment on the Visund field.

Working environment Well integrity
The audit was conducted between 20 January and 12 February 2021.

The audit was interdisciplinary and focused on the technical condition, organizational robustness and working environment of the drilling facility at Visund.

We wanted to monitor how Equinor manages and follows up on working environment risk in the drilling facility for its own employees, the drilling contractor and service companies, so as to ensure that working environment risk is addressed and monitored in order to avoid damage to health.

We also wanted to monitor that the technical condition of equipment is safeguarded so as to ensure safe operations and control the risk of well control incidents at Visund.

Furthermore we wished to verify that Equinor is implementing necessary measures to protect health, safety and the environment.

During the audit, nine non-conformities were identified relating to:
- Management of working environment risk at Visund
- Follow-up and handling of working environment risk
- Training and information about health risks in the working environment
- The working hours provisions
- Requirements concerning the recording of working hours and due diligence
- Inadequate risk assessment and implementation of measures in connection with the implementation of IO3
- Insufficient capacity and expertise
- Procedures
- Technical requirements for equipment and materials used for the performance of drilling/well activities
- Rectification of previous non-conformities

In addition, four improvement points were identified relating to:
- Barrier management in the event of loss of well control
- Training and verification of training for new job tasks
- Weaknesses in assessments and performance of cooperation with support personnel on land
- Facilitation of genuine employee participation
- Follow-up pursuant to order

On 26 October 2020, we issued an order to Equinor following an audit of Equinor's and Archer's management of working environment risk at Grane. In this, we instructed Equinor to review its own management system and practices for working environment follow-up.

The observations we have made in the audit of Visund are coincident with the observations that underpinned the order concerning Equinor's working environment management.

Follow-up of previous audits
As part of the audit, we investigated how Equinor has addressed non-conformities we have previously identified. We found two non-conformities that had not been rectified in line with the company's feedback to us. These related to:
- Non-conformity concerning “Defects in the diverter system in the BOP stack”
- Non-conformity concerning “Inadequate compliance measurements of lifting equipment in the drilling area”

What happens now?
We have asked Equinor to report on how the non-conformities will be addressed. The company has also been asked to give its assessment of the improvement points observed. The deadline for this is set at 15 September 2021.

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