API: Industry made strides in offshore safety since Macondo

The American Petroleum Institute asked the US Chemical Safety Board to consider what API calls industry’s progress on offshore safety since the Apr. 20, 2010, deepwater Macondo well blowout and massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Holly Hopkins, API’s senior policy advisor in upstream and industry operations, prepared written comments that she planned to present verbally during a CSB June 5 public meeting in Houston.

“No incident is acceptable. Our industry takes every incident seriously,” Hopkins said. “Continued vigilance is essential in helping to prevent future incidents.”

She noted CSB’s Macondo report focused on the blowout preventer, saying CSB’s Volume 2 “fails to acknowledge the entire system and the systems-based approach that is essential for safe operations.”

CSB must recognize industry’s significant safety strides directly related to implementation of a systems-based approach if CSB is going to make recommendations beyond the BOP failure analysis technical findings, she said.

“Additionally, there are many comments throughout Volume 2 that compare the US and European regulatory approaches,” Hopkins said. “As API has stated in prior public comments, industry is fully committed to safe operations, both on and offshore.”

Industry standards and programs already call for third-party audits of drilling equipment, she said, adding CSB has not demonstrated how a safety-case regime will result in a higher level of safety in actual operations over a fully implemented, properly managed safety and environment management system described in API Recommended Practice 75.

“The oil and natural gas industry has methodically examined every aspect of offshore safety measures and operations to identify potential improvements in spill prevention, intervention, safety management, and response capabilities,” since the Macondo incident, Hopkins said.

API revised existing standards and created several new ones, including standards dealing with well design, cementing, blowout prevention, subsea equipment for capping wells and protections for oil spill response workers, she said.

The Center for Offshore Safety was created in 2011 to promote safety for offshore drilling, completions and operations. The US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement adopted three of the center's guidelines into its own regulations.

Industry and government are working together to improve offshore drilling safety and industry standards, she said.

Contact Paula Dittrick at paulad@ogjonline.com.

Related Articles

Market watch: Energy futures prices rose slightly Friday

05/06/2002 Crude oil futures prices rose slightly Friday amid lingering uncertainty about a possible disruption of Middle East supplies, although tensions in ...

Gulf of Mexico oil service sector showing signs of an upturn

05/06/2002 The Gulf of Mexico oil service sector is experiencing the signs of an upturn, analysts with Simmons & Co. International, UBS Warburg LLC, and RBC D...

OTC: Industry, national agencies need to work together to make FPSOs work in the gulf

05/06/2002 Over the coming years, the oil and gas industry will have to keep an open line of communication with national agencies such as the US Coast Guard a...

Market watch: Energy futures prices fall as Iraq lifts embargo

05/07/2002 Crude oil futures prices fell Monday after Iraq announced plans to lift a self-imposed export embargo with exports expected to resume by Wednesday.

Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected