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  • Writer's pictureMorten N. Pettersen | Principal Consultant

HAZOPs for Offshore Drilling Activities - What You Need to Know

Updated: Jun 12, 2023


HAZOPs for Offshore Drilling Activities

When it comes to offshore drilling activities, there is one vital thing that you always need to remember. Namely that exploration, production, and intervention drilling are operations representing major accident hazards. Wrong decisions, missing contingency plans, or equipment failure may cause a loss of good control. For this reason, conducting drilling HAZOPS is a useful and flexible way of identifying and assessing hazards related to drilling activities. It is another useful method to ensure system safety.

Our method for performing the Drilling HAZOP for Offshore Drilling Activities

ORS uses a drilling HAZOP method for performing a detailed risk evaluation of drilling operations. The risk assessment intends to identify hazards that could occur during the drilling operation, assess the severity and probability of each hazard, and finally establish a basis for developing contingency procedures and safeguards. The drilling HAZOP method applied by ORS is based on the analysis of the entire drilling operation in a multidisciplinary workshop with all involved parties. Normally, the participants include drilling engineers, mud operators, geologists, logistics, drilling fluids specialists, tool pushers, a superintendent, rig manager, etc. During the HAZOP, you typically divide the drilling operation into different sections. Each section typically includes drilling, circulation, and running of conductor/casing and cementing. Evaluation of the interfaces among rig systems and drilling systems is done in a thorough manner. For each section, you use customized drilling guide words. This is to ensure a consistent review of the entire system and to uncover potential hazards. Additionally, it's important to evaluate predefined drilling hazards/accidental scenarios in order to examine the consequence and the contingency plans.


Read also our article about: "HAZOP vs HAZID – when is one more useful than the other?" Lastly, please feel free to contact our specialists if you would like to know more about offshore drilling activities or if you would like to discuss how your organization can benefit from performing drilling HAZOPs for Drilling Operations. Or perhaps you would like to know more about some other topic such as LOPA, technical safety, etc. We have years of experience in this field, and we would love to help you with our expertise.

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