“Deepwater Horizon” is a movie that hit the screens last month and is a depiction of the oil rig that exploded, sank and killed 11 workers on April 20, 2010. The tragedy was also regarded as one of the worst environmental disasters to date. On that day, the cement plug in the Macondo well failed and hydrocarbons leaked up to the drill floor, which caused mud fountains to flow and created a huge cloud of flammable gas. Although several alarms were triggered, the crew misinterpreted emergency procedures and failed punch the general alarm to alert the rest of the rig on time, which would have engaged the emergency shut down system. However, because they hesitated, gas entered the engine room. Two engines overran and exploded, which wiped out all of the rig’s controls and caused the entire tanker to shut down. Communications, phones, handheld radios and the lights went out….
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On March 11th, federal safety officials launched an investigation into the death of an oil rig worker in the Gulf of Mexico after the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement responded to a fatal injury report. According to NOLA.com, the platform is located about 150 miles off shore, south of New Orleans and is owned by Whistler Energy II. While the cause of this tragedy is still under investigation, Whistler’s chief operating officer reported it was not caused by an explosion and there is no environmental pollution reported in the area. That said, there is speculation as to whether this oil rig worker was properly trained. Operators Who Do Not Properly Train Workers are Putting Workers at Risk There are more than 4,000 oil rig platforms and exploration rigs in the Gulf of Mexico. Oil rig workers are given very arduous work and often little sleep, little instruction and, according…
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Due to the fact more oil is produced and shipped out of the U.S. in these past few years, a recent concern was brought forth by the Congressional Research Service last month. The sudden change in how the nation ships oil has left little time to analyze the safety of oil barges and tankers. Currently, two facilities transport crude oil to other U.S. facilities by ship. The Anacortes, Washington oil refinery receives its oil from Alaska, while the Clatskanie, Oregon oil terminal receives crude oil from trains that pick up the oil from barges at the Columbia River. The report mainly lays blame with the U.S. Coast Guard: however, it is safe to say barge owners and operators are primarily responsible for workplace safety. Regulations on Barge Worker Safety Falls Short According to the report, oil barges used to transport oil by rivers are not held to the same safety…
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Posted in Oil Tanker