Fatal Diver Incident due to uncontrolled differential pressure
Country: NORWAY - Europe
Location: ONSHORE : Mobile Drilling Unit
Incident Date: 26 January 2016 Time: ---
Type of Activity: Diving, subsea, ROV
Type of Injury: Pressure release
The diver was preparing to blind off the torpedo pipe on the rig's pontoon. The torpedo pipe is a 0.45 metre diameter pipe running through the pontoon of the rig to allow for wires used when thrusters to be replaced. The length of the pipe is 13 metres,
with one lower valve 1 metre up from the bottom, and one upper valve 1.2 metres from the top of the pipe. The valves were partly open to equalise the pipe.
What Went Wrong?:
When the diver introduced air into the pipe an artificial undiscovered concrete plug on top of the upper valve broke and the diver's head and left arm were sucked into the pipe causing great pain. The standby diver, being fully dressed, entered the water
immediately (within 30 seconds) and the wounded diver was brought to the surface within 9 minutes.
Corrective Actions and Recommendations:
Safety Alert number: 275
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