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Offshore Worker Seriously Injured After Drill Line Falls on Rig Deck

Published in Oil Industry News on Monday, 21 October 2019

Graphic for News Item: Offshore Worker Seriously Injured After Drill Line Falls on Rig Deck

An offshore oil worker has suffered serious injuries aboard Diamond Offshore’s Ocean Monarch drilling rig in operating in the Bass Strait Australia, prompting the national offshore safety body NOPSEMA to issue a “prohibition notice.”

NOPSEMA said that the worker was injured on September 17, after a drill line fell to the Ocean Monarch’s drill floor after the tension applied by the draw works during the 2“ drill line replacement exceeded the breaking strength of the wire rope snake causing the destruction of the snake.

According to the regulator, the impact resulted in significant injuries, and the equipment falling from height had the potential for fatal injuries.

In its take on why the incident happened, NOPSEMA said: “When changing out the drill line the operator had no means of monitoring the amount of tension applied by the draw works as a result excessive tension was applied to the drill line which exceeded the breaking strength of the wire rope snake causing the destruction of the wire rope snake resulting in the drill line falling to the drill floor and significantly injuring a member of the workforce.”

Following an on-site inspection, NOPSEMA determined that the operation must not be undertaken again until Diamond Offshore has implemented adequate systems and work practices to remove the threat to the health and safety of employees at the facility.

“NOPSEMA continues to investigate this matter and further enforcement action, if warranted, may follow,” NOPSEMA said Friday.

According to available information, at the time of the incident, the rig was working for Cooper Energy on the Annie-1 well. The incident happened a day after Cooper had announced it would cut short its drilling program offshore Australia due to the failure of two mooring chains on the Ocean Monarch. 

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