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Drilling It Safely

Exception-based remote monitoring incorporates intelligence to enable early detection of well control events

Industry statistics suggest that the majority of well control incidents and near-misses occur during well construction operations. To address this issue, the industry has focused on stringent well design and casing standards, blowout prevention equipment, safe drilling practices and multiple layers of workflows and controls. However, the data also shows that most well control incidents occur as a result of human factors – misinterpretation of data, delayed response to abnormal well conditions, drilling crew inexperience and physical fatigue – that are not addressed by hydraulics and mechanical well control mechanisms.

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HSE&T Corner: Hard hat uses transparent visor to increase workers’ peripheral vision

With the multitude of safety-related challenges that workers face in the upstream oil and gas industry, any improvement in a worker’s ability to be aware of their surroundings can make a difference when it comes to keeping themselves and others out of harm’s way. To address this, National Oilwell Varco (NOV) and Bullard are introducing a hard hat designed to increase workers’ upper peripheral vision.

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Enhanced well control course integrates technical training with simulator exercises, human factors

IADC is developing a new accreditation program for enhanced well control training that emphasizes human factors and enhanced simulation-based exercises. Between January and July of this year, Rowan Companies and Maersk Training piloted a course that could serve as a basis for this program.

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ABS, partners test Polar Code requirements through search and rescue exercise offshore Norway

In April, ABS partnered with the Norwegian coast guard, academic institutions and other stakeholder companies to perform a search and rescue exercise in Svalbard, Norway. The University of Stavanger, Company GMC and the Norwegian Coast Guard organized the exercise, which took place on the K V Svalbard, a Norwegian Coast Guard vessel. The exercise was conducted to gain a better understanding of the IMO Polar Code’s requirements, which many in the industry regard as vague, according to ABS. For example, the code requires the crews of maritime vessels, including drilling rigs, to be equipped be able to survive five days in polar waters while awaiting rescue. There was concern about whether this was even possible with existing equipment, said ABS ...

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IADC developing guidelines for alarm management on rigs

The IADC Drilling Control Systems (DCS) Subcommittee under the Advanced Rig Technology (ART) Committee is developing a set of alarm management guidelines for the drilling industry. “We are suggesting that drilling contractors, land and offshore, have an alarm philosophy in place that is appropriate for the drilling control systems and inventory on their rigs,” said Christopher Goetz, Partner at Kingston Systems. Mr Goetz is on a working group of subcommittee members leading the development of the guidelines.

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MPD allows for dynamic well control offshore

When drilling offshore – particularly in deepwater – the distance between the BOP on the seafloor and the rig can potentially leave the riser, as well as the rig, exposed to kicks. “If, for example, an influx or a kick gets past the BOPs, it can travel up the riser. As it gets closer to atmospheric pressure, it can then unload at an exponential rate, causing danger to the personnel, the equipment and of course the environment,” said Guy Feasey, VP of Well Integrity at Weatherford. Managed pressure drilling (MPD) can account for these influxes. It can also provide drillers with additional options on how to deal with these influxes, aside from simply shutting in the BOP. Watch the video with Mr Feasey from the 2016 IADC World Drilling Conference in Lisbon to learn more about how MPD can enable dynamic well control.

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Drilling Systems pushes simulator, virtual reality technologies to improve rig crew training

Advances in simulator and virtual reality technologies are helping the drilling industry to bring more life-like training environments to rig crews. At the 2016 IADC World Drilling Conference in Lisbon, Drilling Systems showcased several new simulator-based training technologies, including the On The Rig simulator and the virtual reality-based DrillSIM-5 3D. Watch the video with Drilling Systems CEO Ian Hudson to learn about how these new technologies can help improve crew training.

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