The UK Oil & Gas Industry is beginning to see an increase in the number of installations moving towards decommissioning and final dismantlement. A fresh look at the identification and management of the hazards is required during this phase and the recording of this information in the installation’s safety case as required by the UK Regulations.
When safety cases were introduced for UK offshore installations in the early 1990s, industry came together to understand the implications and share lessons learnt during their development. Once again, industry collaboration will allow operators to share and learn from each other on how best to plan and manage the final safety case for an installation. Companies that have already gone through the process of dismantling their installations have shared their experiences in this guidance. Key learnings include the benefits gained from an early start to preparation as well as the communications needed about the approach to be taken. Detail is also given on the need to ensure a strong working relationship with the Verifier, as Safety and Environmentally Critical Elements (SECE) on the installation are likely to change, significantly and relatively quickly, as the decommissioning progresses.
This guidance will help those updating their safety case to present their approach to managing risks associated with late life operation of the installation and on into dismantlement.