The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) has released its Report following the investigation into the dropped object incident that occurred at the West Delta 30-P OCS 00026 platform on January 24, 2020. The platform is owned and operated by Cox Operating LLC. During the incident, a crew on the platform was removing a set of concrete steps, which fell off the platform.
The BSEE report explained incident:
On 24 January 2020, the construction crew members started removing the cement stairway located on the northeast side of the cellar deck. As the crew members prepared the rigging for the stairway, the supervisor instructed them not to rig up all of the nylon straps until the last cut. The supervisor felt that the nylon straps would burn during the cutting process. As the crew members were making the third cut, the steps broke loose. A section of the stairwell 5 ft 6 in X 4 ft 9 in fell 30 ft down into water on the side of the platform. The crew members reported the incident to the Cox Operating PIC onboard at the time of the incident.
Simply put, an incident like this is the result of multiple failures. Offshore policies and procedures should be in please, such that multiple failures do not occur. There were numerous opportunities for this incident to have been prevented before the material was dropped overboard. As noted by BSEE, there were multiple probable and contributing causes to the incident:
• Equipment Failure – Inadequate/improper tool.
• Human Performance Error – Not aware of hazards.
• Supervision – Inattention to worker safety concerns: The crew members did not properly secure the stairway during welding and cutting operations.
• Human Performance Error – Inattention to task: The crew members failed to regroup by initiating a plan to safely secure the stairway, preventing it from becoming falling debris.
• Management Systems – No or inadequate “Stop Work” procedures: The crew members did not initiate “Stop Work Authority” once the stairway was found corroded before making the final cut.
The actions of the company violated numerous provisions:
G-110-C Does the lessee perform all operations in a safe and workmanlike manner and provide for the preservation and conservation of property and the environment: At the time of the incident that occurred on 25 January 2020, at 1900 hours. Cox Operating failed to conduct construction operations in a workmanlike manner by not using the best available and safest technologies (BAST).
E-108-S Is the lessee preventing the disposal of equipment, cables, chains, containers, or other materials into offshore waters: Cox Operating failed to secure the stairwell section located on the north east cellar deck. The stairway was not rig up and secured to prevent it from falling into the Gulf of Mexico offshore. not recovered.
G-132-W Has the District Manager been verbally notified immediately following incident: Cox Operating failed to notify the BSEE New Orleans District Office to report an incident.
Our attorneys have extensive experience in maritime injury and wrongful death litigation in courts across the country and the skills needed to represent the families of loved ones who have lost their lives as a result of the negligence of another party, or been seriously injured. We have handled numerous cases involving injuries that occurred on offshore platforms. The experienced offshore accident attorneys at Spagnoletti Law Firm can help you understand your rights if you or a loved one was a victim of an offshore accident. Please contact us online or call 713-804-9306 or 877-678-5864 to learn more about your legal rights.