Deepsea Atlantic rig; Source: Odfjell Drilling

Odfjell tasked with tackling nonconformities on semi-sub rig

Norwegian offshore safety regulator has carried out an audit of Odfjell Drilling’s management of the working environment and helideck operations on one of its semi-submersible rigs, currently working for Equinor off Norway, and is awaiting a response from the offshore drilling contractor regarding the way the identified nonconformities will be handled.

Deepsea Atlantic rig; Source: Odfjell Drilling

The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) recently reported that it had conducted the audit between 20 and 27 April 2023 with assistance from the Civil Aviation Authority Norway. The objective of the audit was to verify that Odfjell Drilling’s management of the working environment, employee participation, and helideck operations on the Deepsea Atlantic semi-submersible rig complied with the regulatory requirements.

In addition, the PSA’s audit verified how the company had addressed previously identified nonconformities/improvement points and ensuing orders from the audits of 2017 and 2020. As a result, the regulator found two conditions that had not been fully addressed in line with the regulations and Odfjell’s feedback. These concern the system for following up the training of the emergency preparedness organisation on board and the system for training the emergency preparedness organisation on board.

While conducting its recent audit, the PSA identified several breaches of the regulations. Within the working environment, six nonconformities were identified, concerning analyses of the working environment, noise, hand/arm vibration, psychosocial working environment, prevention of musculoskeletal disorders, and personal protective equipment. The offshore safety watchdog also found three improvement points regarding the follow-up of other participants; employee participation; and diesel exhaust.

On the other hand, the Norwegian regulator found three nonconformities within emergency preparedness/helideck. These entail emergency lighting for the operation of dual agent hose reel; the system for following up the training of the emergency preparedness organisation on board; and continuous improvement. When it comes to the helideck, the PSA identified six nonconformities and one improvement point/observation.

The Petroleum Safety Authority has asked Odfjell to report how the nonconformities will be addressed and provide its assessment of the observed improvement points by 30 June 2023. The 2009-built Deepsea Atlantic is a sixth-generation deepwater and harsh environment semi-submersible, dual derrick, dynamic-positioned rig of enhanced GVA 7500 design.

In November 2022, Equinor extended the rig’s stay offshore Norway until the first quarter of 2024 with five additional wells on the Johan Sverdrup Phase 2 development. Come March 2023, Odfjell revealed that it had signed two LOIs with a combined firm duration of 23 months for the semi-submersible rig to conduct operations in the North Sea region.