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Drilling It Safely

HSE&T Corner: OU study indicates potential for real-time eye tracking to improve driller’s situational awareness, decision making

Real-time eye tracking has the potential to be used on drilling rigs to track the situational awareness of drillers, Raj Kiran, a PhD candidate at the University of Oklahoma, said at the 2018 IADC/SPE Drilling Conference in Fort Worth, Texas, on 7 March. A test of the eye-tracking technology, conducted at OU’s virtual reality drilling simulator, found that it has strong potential applications on drilling rigs to track how decisions are made, as well as enable better decision making. During the test at OU, participants wore eye-tracking glasses while eye-tracking information was displayed on the left-most monitor in real time.

Situational awareness, or the lack thereof, can significantly impact an individual’s decision making and performance on a drilling rig. “You can make your system as robust as possible, but if someone performing their job isn’t aware or is missing some key cues, they can’t deliver successfully,” Raj Kiran, a PhD candidate in petroleum engineering at the University of Oklahoma (OU), said at the 2018 IADC/SPE Drilling Conference in Fort Worth, Texas, on 7 March...

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BSEE implements new quality assurance process for offshore energy operations


In an ongoing effort to increase responsible and efficient offshore energy operations, the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) has implemented a new quality assurance process for reviewing and assessing its permitting systems. The new process seeks to reflect on permits issued by the agency and helps inform best practices for offshore energy permitting...

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BSEE increases safety inspection time offshore


Beginning 1 April, the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) is increasing physical inspection time offshore, while reducing taxpayer burden by nearly $20 million over 3.5 years, providing significant cost-savings to the American public. Exploring ways to make inspections more efficient and reduce helicopter-operating expenses, a team of BSEE leaders in the Gulf of Mexico Region developed the new approach...

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IADC launches WellSharp Well Servicing accreditation program

Mr Venettozzi reviews the database of WellSharp Well Servicing test questions, as well as well servicing simulations, with Brooke Polk, IADC Director of Program Development and Technology.

To instigate a step-change in the prevention of well control events during well servicing operations, IADC is launching the WellSharp Well Servicing accreditation program to replace the legacy WellCAP Well Servicing program. The new program will go live on 1 April after more than two years in development. “By 1 April, training providers will stop teaching WellCAP Well Servicing,” Mark Denkowski, IADC VP of Accreditation Operations, said. So far, close to half of all training providers who are accredited under WellCAP have either already converted to or started the application process with WellSharp...

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HSE&T Corner: Interviewing front-line employees can help identify, eliminate system weaknesses before they manifest as human error

To identify and eliminate system weaknesses, companies should proactively interview front-line employees about incidents, Sandra Adkins, BP’s Global Wells Organization Safety Advisor for Human Performance, said. These employees are important sources of information because they work at the intersection of people, processes and the plant. Ms Adkins was speaking at the 2018 IADC Health, Safety Environment and Training Conference in Houston on 6 February.

Research shows that human error and nonconformance can account for up to 80% of incidents. Of that 80%, up to 70% of incidents can then be attributed to system weaknesses, or conditions that allow an error to occur, said Sandra Adkins, Global Wells Organization Safety Advisor for Human Performance at BP. That means only 30% are related to individual mistakes. And yet, most incident investigations rely on traditional methods, such as near-miss reporting and observation programs, that tend to focus on proximal causes, such as human error. They rarely delve into system weaknesses...

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Zinke announces changes to oil and gas inspection program


US Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke announced a series of new initiatives to strengthen the federal offshore oil and gas inspection program. Secretary Zinke highlighted a risk-based inspection element and an increase in the amount of time allotted for physical inspection of offshore facilities as two of six initiatives that the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) will institute before mid-2018. Secretary Zinke’s announcement at the 2018 CERAWeek conference coincides with the US offshore’s highest oil production year on record, totaling 629 million barrels during 2017...

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Halliburton facilities, business lines first in Angola to achieve API Q2 registration


Halliburton announced that its Angolan facilities, Luanda – SONILS base, which incorporates the Cabinda – Malembo base and Soyo – Kwanda base facilities, and all of the company’s product service lines in those locations have received the American Petroleum Institute (API) Specification Q2 Registration. The facilities are the first in Angola to receive this registration, an advanced industry quality standard for oil and natural gas service companies...

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IOGP publishes updated version of the guidelines for the conduct of offshore drilling hazard site surveys


The International Association of Oil and Gas Producers (IOGP) has published an update to the Guidelines for the conduct of offshore drilling hazard site surveys, reflecting feedback on the original document from regulators around the world, IOGP member companies, contractors, verification bodies and consultants...

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Thorough investigations into small incidents can yield big safety gains


Small incidents – or unplanned events that did not result in injury, illness or damage but had the potential to do so – should be investigated more thoroughly than they are now. It is a cost-effective way to provide a greater understanding of complex systems and global behaviors, Mike Munsil, Project Manager at PSRG, said at the IADC HSE&T Conference in Houston. In this video from the event on 6 February, Mr Munsil explains how a 5-Why approach, which asks a series of successive “why” questions, can be used to investigate small incidents. He also explains why he advocates for the term “small incident” rather than “near miss,” which can convey the idea that an event is isolated and unimportant...

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