Best Practices in Recent Loss Prevention Incidents

The following presentation/article makes a brief review of best practices in loss prevention that have been collected from some of the recent UK P&I Club loss prevention bulletins, hence a UK P&I Club miscellany.

2013.12.05 - Best Practices in Recent Loss Prevention Incidents

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Reasons Illegal Discharges from Ships Occur

Whether an illegal discharge is due to negligence (such as poor maintenance of equipment) or is deliberate (even actively promoted by the company), it is usually the result of action/inaction both on the part of ship operators, and of ship master and crew. On some occasions, violations of pollution regulations may result from lack of awareness by operators and crew. Deliberate illegal discharges occur due to a conjunction of two factors: 1) there are economic advantages for ship operators; 2) there is a low risk of being caught and penalised. Motivations for the individual crew members are slightly different; these are less likely to include cost savings, but may be based on an intention to follow perceived instructions (often implied rather than explicit) and/or fear of losing a job. The following information are an extract from EMSA’s “Addressing Illegal Discharges in the Marine Environment” publication.

2013.12.03 - Reasons Illegal Discharges Occur

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Tracing Vessel Ownership – the Erika Case

In the case of an accident and especially when an environmental disaster has occurred as a result of the accident, the multitude of parties involved as well as the “impossibility” of tracing ownership of the vessel, usually when she is registered in a Flag of Convenience (FOC), makes it really difficult to conclude who was responsible for the accident or to assign share of the responsibility to the stakeholders involved. The case of the Erika, a tanker which sank off the coast of France in 1999, illustrates many of the above mentioned  concerns. On December 8, 1999 the Erika, a 37,000 ton tanker flying the Maltese flag and chartered by the oil company Total SA, formerly Total Fina Elf (and Total Fina at the time of the spill), left Dunkirk and sailed through the English Channel en route to the port of Livorno in Italy.

2013.10.01 - Tracing Vessel Ownership, the Erika Case

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A Brief History of US Offshore Oil Drilling

The BP Deepwater Horizon explosion in April 2010 occurred after a dramatic, three-decade-long reconfiguration of how the United States and several other nations drill for oil. Technology, law, and geology pushed oil exploration farther from U.S. shores, as land-based exploration became less fruitful, and the global demand for energy ramped up. Oil production off American coasts began well over a century ago, but the move into deepwater and ultra-deepwater is a relatively recent phenomenon. This post presents a brief history of offshore oil drilling based on a relevant staff working paper by the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

2013.09.03 - A Brief History of Offshore Oil Drilling Figure 1

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The Probability of an Offshore Accident

Risk is the product of frequency and consequence. Accordingly, high consequence events which occur infrequently may contribute as much risk as frequent events which have smaller consequences. Estimating the frequency with which events occur is as important to overall risk as accurately predicting the consequences. One way of estimating frequency is to look at historical records. The information presented below are an abstract from the “Safety of offshore oil & gas Impact Assessment Annex I” working paper from the European Commission, published in 2011 to accompany the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament on safety of offshore oil and gas prospection, exploration and production activities.

2013.08.06 - The Probability of an Offshore Accident Figure 1

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Potential Costs of an Offshore Accident

The negative impacts of an accident are hard to quantify precisely, they will of course depend on the type, the scale, the time and the location of the event. In the case of an oil spill, its duration and the type of the oil will also have a major impact. The costs of an offshore accident will include costs to the operator (damage to the installation, lost oil, containment, cleanup, litigation etc.) and third-party costs to victims, to natural resources, the government and the affected individuals/businesses (including lost income). The information presented below are an abstract from the “Safety of offshore oil & gas Impact Assessment Annex I” working paper from the European Commission, published in 2011 to accompany the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament on safety of offshore oil and gas prospection, exploration and production activities.

2013.07.16 - Potential Costs of an Offshore Accident Figure 1

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Riser Disconnect and Blowout – Incident Investigation

This accident investigation report refers to the accidental riser disconnect and subsequent uncontrolled flow during drilling operations which occurred on Mississippi Canyon Block 538 in February 2000. The Ocean Concord (semi-submersible mobile offshore drilling unit) was in the process of running a liner on drill pipe when the lower marine riser package (LMRP) was inadvertently disconnected from the blowout preventer (BOP) stack. The disconnect resulted in the discharge to the sea of approximately 806 barrels of synthetic mud from the riser and 150 barrels of synthetic mud and 150-200 barrels of crude oil from the wellbore.

2013.07.08 - Riser Disconnect and Blowout - Incident Investigation Figure 1

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Pipeline Leak – Investigation Report

This investigation report by the US Minerals Management Service (MMS) was conducted in conjunction with the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) and is referring to several pollution events were reported in the Main Pass Block 288 area GoM, over a three-week time period beginning 31 May 2007. On 31 May 2007, the National Response Center (NRC) received a report that indicated a 350-foot by 100-foot oil slick had been sighted in the Main Pass Block 288 area. In the following three weeks, four additional oil slicks of various sizes, color, and consistency were reported in the same area. On 23 June 2007, a major spill (the Spill) was reported to NRC in a subsequent report. The Spill covered an area 30 miles in length by 6 miles wide and was later estimated to be comprised of 187 barrels (bbls) of oil.

2013.07.01 - Pipeline Leak - Investigation Report Figure 1

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MOL Comfort Containership Sinks After Breaking in Two

It has been reported by the Indian Coast Guard and is widely spread in the media that MOL Comfort broke in two and sank in Arabian sea on 17 June 2013. The vessel was manned with 26 crewmembers who have been rescued by nearby vessels and are well in their health. The Bahamas flagged containership MOL Confort had a DWT of 90613 MT and a capacity of 8100 TEU.

2013.06.18 - MOL Comfort Containership Sinks After Breaking in Two Figure 1

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BP Deepwater Horizon Accident Investigation Report