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Posts under ‘Shell Employee Safety’

Australia’s $180 bln LNG megaproject boom enters final stretch

By Sonali Paul

MELBOURNE, Aug 14 (Reuters) – The last massive component of Australia’s $180 billion liquefied natural gas construction boom arrived on Monday, stepping up a race between Anglo-Dutch giant Shell and Japan’s Inpex to start chilling gas for export in 2018. Company reputations are at stake, as well as first access to overlapping gas fields and Australia leapfrogging Qatar as the world’s largest exporter of LNG. Royal Dutch Shell’s $12.6 billion Prelude project – the world’s largest floating LNG (FLNG) facility – is also behind schedule. FULL ARTICLE read more

Eternal Shame of Shell over North Sea Platform Safeguards

Posting by Bill Campbell, Retired HSE Group Auditor, Shell International

In the 25 years following Piper Alpha (commemorations were held in Aberdeen a few weeks ago) the man who presided over a potential Piper Alpha rerun was Chris Finlayson. Although he blamed Brinded it is Finlayson who had the line accountability for health and safety offshore when in September 2003 two men died when an estimated 6800 cubic metres of gas flooded a into an enclosed support column on Brent Bravo.

Lord Cullen, who was passed all the documentation from the Shell internal technical report into this near catastrophe was under no allusions. The lives of 156 workers could have been put a jeopardy if the gas had ignited. His safety case system had failed and it had almost led to a repeat. read more

Shell suffering legacy of BG Group negligence in maintaining safety critical equipment

Shell suffering legacy of BG Group negligence in maintaining safety critical equipment

Opinion from a contributor to our Shell Blog

A media article has revealed that Shell is already suffering from the legacy of BG Group negligence in maintaining safety critical equipment.

The HSE have issued an improvement notice for failing to install gas detection equipment on the Lomond Platform, despite recommendations from two separate studies.

A second improvement notice was issued for failing to test a High Integrity Protection System (HIPS) since 2014, despite the associated Performance Standard requirement to test annually.

It could be assumed that Finlayson encouraged the infamous Brent TFA during his tenure at the helm of BG to maximise production volumes (an obsession with executives), at the expense of safety system testing. That assumption would not be entirely accurate, the same culture was evident in BG Group long before. Previous failures of a HIPS testing regime had been exposed at another BG operational location, yet despite this no one was held accountable. Maybe if they had been the ‘management team’ in question would not have been implanted in Aberdeen in 2012. read more

Shell Reports Fire, Unit Shutdown at Norco, La., Facility

Dow Jones Newswires

Royal Dutch Shell Plc said Monday that a fire over the weekend at its Norco refining and chemicals facility in Louisiana has forced it to shut down a unit. “There is no timetable for the restart of the unit,” Shell said in an emailed statement, without identifying the specific unit. “Operations are stable. For reasons of commercial confidentiality, we do not provide details about the operational status of individual units or information on supply.” It said no workers were injured in the incident, which happened early Saturday morning. FULL ARTICLE read more

Shell cannot say it was not warned about Prelude FLNG

Warning by Bill Campbell, retired HSE Group Auditor, Shell International: Hydrocarbon leaks on offshore installations are unavoidable!

The answer to the question, can offshore installations meet a zero tolerance standard for hydrocarbon leaks, is easily answered, they cannot! Keeping hydrocarbons in the box appears beyond the wit of man. 

The support for this rather pessimistic view is based on actual historic data from the North Sea. It should be noted that this key indicator is the number one, the foremost technical integrity measure recorded by the HSE offshore division in the UK. All operators also are required to have it as their top indicator and non-reporting of hydrocarbon leaks is an offence in Law. So there is a degree of confidence in the accuracy of this data.  read more

Alarming news today of potential fire and explosion on Shell North Sea platform

By John Donovan

History is repeating itself. Shell is in the news today over its  dangerous North Sea oil platform activities.

Nearly 20 years ago, Shell senior management ignored warnings by HSE Auditor Bill Campbell about the Touch Fuck All regime on the Brent Bravo platform and its potential impact on worker safety. Production and profits were the overriding consideration. Maintenance records were routinely falsified. Lives were put at risk.

Shell EP MD Malcolm Brinded promised to take action based on the scandalous state of affairs Mr Campbell’s team had discovered when he led the safety audit on the platform. The promises were not kept. As a result, platform workers subsequently lost their lives in what was judged by the Scottish legal authorities to be an avoidable accident on Brent Bravo. A record-breaking fine was imposed on Shell. read more

Alarm Bells: Shell Hydrocarbons continue getting out the box

ALARMING COMMENT POSTED BY RETIRED SHELL INTERNATIONAL HSE GROUP AUDITOR, BILL CAMPBELL

Hydrocarbons continue getting out the box

With a Fire breakout at Pernis and a leak at Singapore refinery, both incidents over the last few days, it seems loss of containment is a continuing serious issue both onshore as well as offshore.

Much has been written about FLNG suggesting Prelude for example simply just cannot afford leaks and fires because of the potential consequences – but can they be totally avoided, can they?

Can any offshore installation meet a zero tolerance standard for leaks? read more

Kiobel Writ: Shell and the murderous Abacha regime operated in tandem

Shell paid and maintained part of the Nigerian police force; Shell was prepared to purchase arms for the regime; Shell had puppets in place up to the highest level of the Nigerian government as a result of its revolving door policy, under which former employees of Shell work for the regime and vice versa; Shell maintained a network of informants in Ogoniland in conjunction with the regime. Shell was itself… a direct and active part of (all ranks of) the government apparatus that had to maintain ‘order’ in Ogoniland and to this end violated human rights on a wide scale. Shell’s police force in 1994 numbered more than 1,200 officers… Shell also had 41 marines and 128 MOPOL members… … in total the Shell-operated joint venture employed around 2,470 security staff…

By John Donovan

The numbered paragraphs below are extracted from the 138 page Esther Kiobel Writ served on multiple Royal Dutch Shell companies on 28 June 2017. More information about the latest litigation, this time in the Dutch Courts, is provided after the extracts.

Extracts Begin

8.4 Shell and the regime operated in tandem

246. Not only did Shell stand at the cradle of the aforementioned excesses by requesting the intervention of MOPOL or the RSISTF again and again, it also factually enabled the regime to do this by providing it with arms, personnel and money. As such, Shell facilitated the excessive actions by the regime, but also fulfilled typical government tasks itself.247. The strong entanglement of Shell and the regime is evident inter alia from the following facts and circumstances, some of which have previously been discussed above: read more

Shell shuts down most of Netherlands refinery due to fire

JULY 30, 2017 8:37 AM:  

Royal Dutch Shell is shutting down most units at its refinery in Rotterdam, the Netherlands after a fire at a high-voltage electricity switch station. Shell spokesman Thijs van Velzen says the fire started late Saturday and was extinguished by Sunday morning. Nobody was injured. The Pernis refinery in Rotterdam’s sprawling port is Europe’s largest. It has the capacity to refine just over 400,000 barrels of crude oil per day. The shutdown led to Shell burning off excess gases at the plant, a process known as flaring. The move sent large flames into the sky on Sunday.Van Velzen says the cause of the fire is under investigation. He declined comment on the financial implications of the shutdown. SOURCE read more

Major Fire at Shell Rotterdam Refinery Extinguished

Major Fire at Shell Rotterdam Refinery Extinguished

The fire that broke out last night at Shell Pernis in Rotterdam has been extinguished.

Pernis is the largest refinery in Europe with about sixty factories.

Part of the refinery remains shut down because the electricity is cut.

The fire was caused by short-circuiting in a high voltage station.

According to a security spokesman the flames cover a wide area. This is due to the fact that the company flares out gases released by the refining of oil as part of the safety procedure.

There is no indication that harmful substances have been released. read more

PRELUDE FLNG; A CASE OF ADDING FUEL TO THE FIRE

By Bill Campbell – Retired HSE Group Auditor, Shell International

The physics of fire is readily explained by the simple fire triangle where the constituents needed to be available for fire to begin and persist are a heat source, oxygen and a combustible fuel.

In our industry in 1988 and later in the Gulf of Mexico and offshore India were witnessed catastrophic happenings where an escalating hydrocarbon event could not be curtailed, went out of control and escalated because of the abundance of fuel in massive amounts, mainly gas.

The abundance of fuel on an offshore installation, or on a London Tower building, housing hundreds of people, raises the risk to persons occupying these facilities significantly.  Risk is not just the probability of a fire starting but the potential consequences of that fire should it start and take hold.     read more

Shell News Update Wednesday 7 June 2017

Shell Must Face ‘Take-Home’ Asbestos Suit, Calif. Court Says: LAW360: 6 June 2017

A California appeals court has reversed itself and revived a lawsuit against Shell Oil Co. filed by a former employee’s wife who alleges she contracted mesothelioma from exposure to asbestos that accumulated on her husband’s work clothing.

Norwegian Union Threatens Strike at Statoil, Shell, Eni Platforms: The New York Times: 6 June 2017

Lederne, the smallest of the three Norwegian unions representing oil industry workers, said the strike would target platforms at Eni’s Goliat, Shell’s Draugen and Statoil’s Kvitebjoern, Oseberg East and Gudrun fields. “We believe it would mean shutting down production on those platforms,” a spokesman for the union said. read more

Gas leak shuts Brent Charlie North Sea platform

NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland: SAT 20 MAY 2017

The oil company Shell has said it shut down a platform in the North Sea after a gas leak.

The leak was detected on Friday on the Brent Charlie platform, 115 miles north-east of Shetland.

Production has been stopped and 31 non-essential personnel are being flown home as a precaution. Shell said the leak had been stopped and an investigation was under way.

The Brent Charlie had 176 people on board at the time.

A Shell spokeswoman said: “Following a gas detection alarm, production was shut down and the platform called to muster. The source of the leak has been safely detected and isolated, and a full investigation into the cause will be completed. read more

Gas leak shuts down Shell North Sea oil platform

Emma O’Neill: SATURDAY 20 MAY 2017

The leak happened on the Brent Charlie platform, 115 miles north-east of Shetland.

A gas leak has lead to a North Sea oil platform being shut down.

The gas detection alarm was set off on Friday morning on the Brent Charlie platform, causing all non-essential workers to be evacuated.

There were 176 people platform at the time, with 31 being evacuated. There are no reported injuries.

Production has been ceased while an investigation is underway.

A Shell spokeswoman said: “Following a gas detection alarm, production was shut down and the platform called to muster. The source of the leak has been safely detected and isolated, and a full investigation into the cause will be completed. read more

Shell’s Brent C downmanning after gas leak

Written by

It is understood a gas detection alarm was set off yesterday (Fri) morning on the platform.

Platform personnel were brought to muster, as is standard practice. All 176 workers were safely accounted for and no injuries were reported.

Shell said production has been halted and the leak has been “isolated”.

The oil major has not given any information on the volume of gas involved but there is not through to have been any associated environmental issues. read more

Benzene exposure risks and the Norwegian Oil and Gas Industry

By Bill Campbell, retired Shell International HSE Group Auditor

Benzene exposure risks and the Norwegian Oil and Gas Industry

Just some related background that may be of interest in the debate about this subject re health and safety at the Nyhamma gas plant et al.

The Petroleum Safety Authority in Norway were concerned enough about health aspects of benzene exposure that it held a meeting of experts on the subject in 2015 including representatives of the industry*, Norske Shell does not appear to be on the participants list!

Suffice to say PSA had a general concern that much more needed to be done re the prevention of exposure to Benzene in the industry and they would be including this concern looking for improvements in their future audits and inspections. read more

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