Safety Alert
<<< Back to Results

Printable version

Loss of breathing air during entering

Country: NORWAY - Europe

Location: OFFSHORE

Incident Date: 8 November 2022   Time: ---

Type of Activity: Maintenance, inspection, testing

Cause: Confined space

Function: Production


What happened?:

While cleaning a tank, which involves entering the tank and the use of an external air supply, the air supply stopped and the reserve tank ran out of air without this being detected. The person immediately got out and there were no injuries. The alarm was triggered but the guards did not hear it due to high noise levels in the area.

What Went Wrong?:

  • A fault caused an air compressor to stop and switch to backup air.
  • The alarm signal could not be distinguished from the noise in the area and was not heard. This was not identified as a risk.
  • The alarm panel on the air compressor was not continuously monitored, as it was trusted that the sound signal was sufficient.
  • There were no established requirements for documented training.
  • The unit did not have the opportunity to test that the alarm worked, and there was no secondary independent barrier.

Corrective Actions and Recommendations:

  • Clarify requirements in governing documentation for monitoring air compressor.
  • Dialogue with manufacturer to improve design - use another model that provides a light signal in addition to the audio signal.
  • Ensure that contractor has training requirements for third party equipment.
  • Review procedure and design for use for all fixed and removable air compressors in use.


Safety Alert number: 356
IOGP Safety Alerts http://safetyzone.iogp.org/

Disclaimer

Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, neither the IOGP nor any of its members past present or future warrants its accuracy or will, regardless of its or their negligence, assume liability for any foreseeable or unforeseeable use made thereof, which liability is hereby excluded. Consequently, such use is at the recipient's own risk on the basis that any use by the recipient constitutes agreement to the terms of this disclaimer. The recipient is obliged to inform any subsequent recipient of such terms.
This document may provide guidance supplemental to the requirements of local legislation. Nothing herein, however, is intended to replace, amend, supersede or otherwise depart from such requirements. In the event of any conflict or contradiction between the provisions of this document and local legislation, applicable laws shall prevail.


IOGP
City Tower, 40 Basinghall Street
Level 14
London, London EC2V 5DE
United Kingdom