February, 2015

This is a repeating event

201512FebAll DayPetrobras (Espirito Santos FPSO) Explosion 2015Petrobras, FPSO Cidade de São Mateus, Espírito Santo (BR)Lessons:Asset integrity,Audits & Reviews,Competency,Compliance with Standards,Control of Work,Emergency Preparedness,Incident Investigation,Management of Change,Operating Procedures,Operational Integrity,Process Knowledge,Risk Assessment,Stakeholder Engagement,Workforce InvolvementIndustry:OffshoreCountry:BrazilLanguage:ENLoC:Deterioration Origin: MKOPSC Incident:EXPLOSIONHazards:FlammableContributory Factors:Design of Plant,Management Attitude,Organized Procedures,Process Analysis,SupervisionImpact:HUMAN (On Site Fatalities)Effects:1-10 FatalitiesMaterial:Methane


Explosion in an oil and gas production ship rented by Petrobras. The explosion occurred aboard the FPSO unit. A leak of flammable substance in the pump room was the cause of the explosion.

Proximate causes:
• Failure in following procedures
• Lack of work rules/policies/ standards/procedures (breach of operational procedures for the pumping of fluids)
• Inadequate engineering/design
• Inadequate management/ supervision (installation of equipment in pipe without proper technical specification and registration of the change)
• Work exposure to hazardous chemicals (flammable substances) Inadequate assessment of needs and risks

Marsh (https://www.marsh.com/us/insights/research/100-largest-losses-in-the-hydrocarbon-industry.html):

An explosion on a FPSO off the coast of Brazil resulted in nine fatalities and multiple wounded. The accident happened as the vessel was anchored in the Atlantic Ocean 120 kilometres from the coast of Espirito Santos, Brazil. The FPSO is a converted very large crude oil tanker (VLCC), designed to produce up to 10 million cubic meters of natural gas. It is understood that a condensate leak during a fluid transfer operation released a cloud of flammable vapor into the engine room, resulting in an explosion in the machinery space. The majority of fatalities were believed to be part of the emergency response team. FPSO took on water, but the explosion did not result in a breach of the hull of the vessel.

[ Property Damage $250 Million. Estimated Current Value $264 Million ]

Source: A web-based collection and analysis of process safety incidents (https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0950423016302285)
Image Credit: AFP / Getty Images


MKOPSCMary Kay O'Connor Process Safety Center