Safety watchdog launches probe of Kårstø gas leak

Norwegian safety watchdog the Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA) has decided to instigate an investigation of a gas leak at the Kårstø gas processing plant on January 7, 2016.

The owner of the plant is Gassled, Gassco is the operator and Statoil is a technical service provider.

The gas leak was discovered at 22:30 on January 7, 2016. According to Gassco, the operating company, the leak occurred in the area where the gas from the Statpipe pipeline arrives at Kårstø. This section of the facility was shut down and depressurisation was initiated, the PSA reported.

At present, the size of the leak has not been determined.

Gassco reports that all personnel have been accounted for and brought to safety. No personal injuries resulting from the incident have been notified.

The PSA has decided to instigate an investigation of this incident.

According to the safety authority, the objectives of the investigation include clarifying the chain of events and identifying proximate and underlying causes. Among other things, the investigation will focus on technical conditions, operation and maintenance of the system and emergency response to the incident.

Work on the investigation will begin immediately, the agency said.

Kårstø gas processing plant is in the municipality of Tysvær in Rogaland county. The facility’s operator is Gassco.

The plant separates the rich gas arriving in the Statpipe and Åsgard Transport pipelines into its various components. It also handles unstabilized condensate piped from the Sleipner area.

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