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Australia halts FLNG platform operations till it is proven safe for workers

The nation demonstrated its pride in protecting workers’ welfare with offshore energy regulations

A reputable floating LNG (FLNG) production facility was forced to stop operations from its previous record of electrical faults. Some media reported the site was partially evacuated, leaving only a handful for essential functions.

Intervention from an independent regulator
The country meant business in ensuring workers’ safety by stopping work till the site is proven to be safe for operations. Australia’s National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA) ordered a thorough investigation, and a plan for all necessary corrective actions, as well as prove it is able to operate safety in the event of a power outage, before issuing an approval to resume production.

NOPSEMA is Australia’s independent expert regulator for health and safety, structural integrity and environmental management for all offshore oil and gas operations and greenhouse gas storage activities in Commonwealth’s and coastal waters. The authority’s decreed came after a power outage on location. A subsequent inspection revealed the operator did not have sufficient understanding of the risks of the power system onboard the facility, including failure mechanisms, interdependencies and recovery. Anyone who deemed this to be an overreaction would stand corrected.

The power failure had a direct impact on the facility’s emergency response capability, safety equipment operation, and personnel evacuation. It also involved essential services for personnel, such as lighting, systems for safety, communications, and potable water, sewage treatment and heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC), in addition to effectively manage the LNG inventory.

The site is located 295 miles off the coast of Western Australia and produces LNG at sea before loading it directly onto ships for export to customers around the globe. The 488m long structure has been billed as the largest floating object ever constructed, and displacing nearly 600,000 tonnes. It reportedly shipped its first cargo in 2019 but persistent problems and delays hindered its ability to hit full LNG production capacity at 3.6 million tonnes annually.

Crewing Online News Team
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