Statoil outlines findings on Gullfaks leak

Statoil has submitted its report on a well incident this May on the Gullfaks C platform in the North Sea to the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway.

Offshore staff

STAVANGER, Norway -- Statoil has submitted its report on a well incident this May on the Gullfaks C platform in the North Sea to the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway.

“The incident that occurred in well C-06 on the Gullfaks C platform in the North Sea was serious and involved considerable risk potential. It is imperative we learn from this,” says Øystein Michelsen, Statoil’s executive vice president for Exploration & Production Norway.

“We spent two months restoring barrier No. 2 in the well to ensure we didn’t aggravate the situation. We carried out an internal investigation in order to learn from the incident. This process was extensive and we spent the time that was necessary to ensure the report’s quality.”

No injuries or environmental damage resulted. “I am satisfied that the well normalization process was conducted in a safe, controlled, and technically sound manner,” Michelsen added.

The incident was caused by leakage in a well casing. Production was closed down to reduce risk on the platform. Investigation brought to light deficiencies related to risk management and compliance with internal requirements for drilling planning and execution.

Statoil is now amending its routines for drilling operations on Gullfaks.

The report identifies 18 measures, some linked to:
• Risk analyses and acceptance criteria when complexity increases
• Supporting documentation, quality assurance, and formal planning and decision-making
• Technical expertise.

11/08/2010

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