- Safety Systems
- Measurement / Sensing Device
The lessons learned in this situation center around basic conduct of operations principles. Policies and procedures related to operations performance, safety performance, and management oversight were in place. They were not employed appropriately.
There were approved operations procedures in place to provide direction to personnel to ensure that the SHMS would be operated within its design basis. Those approved and available procedures provided the needed operational direction to accomplish safety, process quality, and control activities. Had the operator made use of the available procedures, the incident very likely would not have occurred.
When operational direction is available (procedures, turnover logs, etc), compliance with that operational direction is required. Communications and shift turnover protocols in this situation were wholly inadequate. Accurate communication is essential for the safe and efficient operation of facilities, systems, and equipment; highly reliable communication provides accurate transmission of information within a facility. That transmission of communication did not occur in this situation. The facility operations personnel should have known the status of all equipment and systems, and should have been able to maintain control at all times. The saltwell pumping activities require interface and coordination between roving operators, specific evolution-related operators, and shift supervisors. That integrative communication did not take place. From the shift supervisor on down, shift personnel should have been aware of operations planned or in progress; status of facility systems and equipment; and any abnormal conditions which may have existed. That information was not effectively documented or transmitted. In addition, the authorization, communication, and documentation of status changes was not thoroughly executed.
Startup and shutdown of systems and equipment require assessing status on a continuing basis. Notification of changes in system status by operators and shift supervisors must be comprehensive and complete to ensure an understanding of and adherence to precautions and prerequisites for safe shift evolutions.