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    Marine consultant launches training programme for 500m zone

    Training // August 8, 2017

    An Aberdeen-based maritime specialist has launched 500m zone management training courses to address concerns raised around offshore installation safety zones.

    Seacroft Marine Consultants is aiming to raise awareness of the need to control marine operations inside the 500m zone as the HSE highlights worries around the control and monitoring of vessels attending installations.

    With 97% of collisions occurring within the 500m zone involving vessels there on legitimate business, the company can offer guidance, recommendations and training courses on how to improve existing practises and safety.

    Michael Cowlam, technical director at Seacroft Marine Consultants, said: “Vessels colliding with a platform have long been considered a major risk for offshore oil and gas installations, and there has of course, always been a focus on having procedures in place to address this and try to avoid it occurring.

    “While collisions are relatively rare occurrences, there have been a number of incidents in recent years which have led to increasing concern from the HSE and other industry organisations about the potential risks involved.

    “Seacroft is able to advise on the responsibilities of an offshore installation’s operator and provide training to improve safety levels and best practice. The Industry has also recently published more robust guidance, which would also make a difference to all stakeholders and oil companies to give assurance against the risk of a major catastrophic incident, loss of productions and costly damage to their facilities.”

    The safety zone is the area extending 500m from any part of an offshore oil and gas installation, and is established automatically around all installations which project above the sea at any state of the tide. 

    Subsea installations may also have safety zones to protect them which are created by statutory instrument. They exist to protect both the safety of the people working on, or in the vicinity of the installation, and the installation itself.

    Mr Cowlam added: “The completion of 500m zone pre entry check lists is only the starting point and not the solution to preventing incidents. It is crucial to consider monitoring and auditing how installations are managing their 500m zones and marine operations.

    “As well as this, planning and communication is essential, along with awareness of both good and bad practices by vessels. This is where we can help and we would urge any company looking into this aspect of their operations to get in touch with us and find out more.”

    Seacroft was established in 1995 to advise and assist offshore operators in all aspects of offshore marine operations and has evolved to become a leading provider of marine consultancy and assurance services to the offshore maritime sector in the UK and internationally. With a team of 15 staff and more than 80 consultants, the company has built its reputation in the marine assurance and consultancy sphere.

    Seacroft Marine Consultants’ expertise includes marine assurance packages, OVID and CMID inspections, dynamic positioning assurance, rig move services, International Safety Management audits, safety audits and incident investigation and as well as simulator training in ship handling and bridge team management and specialist recovery and rescue consultancy services.

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