Volatile weather conditions in Europe’s North Sea have made drilling particularly hazardous, claiming many lives and posing serious potential for other work hazards. Workers on offshore oil rigs normally have to travel to and from the rig by helicopter which is not without risk itself.
But once on the rig they often have to work outdoors in poor weather conditions which can pose a serious risk of a slip, trip or fall. Hurricanes can cause serious damage to the platform itself and to workers on board. Snow, rain, ice and wind can make working surfaces and procedures extremely hazardous.
Poor weather conditions can cause a number of working accidents. Icy rain and winds can lead to slippery surfaces and North Sea winds can increase the chances of a fall from a ladder or other height. A simple climbing of a ladder can become a death defying feat!
What can I do to reduce the risk of injury?
- Keeping all work surfaces clear of oil, tools and debris. In the event of a hurricane or severe weather, obstacles can be deadly
- Wearing adequate safety protection (e.g. hard hats, protective gloves, waterproof shoes.) The effects of a slip, trip or fall can be greatly reduced by wearing the appropriate protection. Protective gloves can provide extra grip in icy conditions
- Conducting a pre-inspection in order to ensure all surfaces are in reasonable condition. A thorough check of any work surfaces can reduce the chance of accidents.
- Ensuring proper maintenance of ladders. Be sure to check that all ladders are adequately secured and that there are no missing rungs.
- Using all guards and handrails. Appropriate guards and hand rails should be installed on all oil rigs to minimise the chances of an injury.
- Using non-slip surfaces where appropriate. Rubber mats and other accessories can help to reduce the chances of slip, trip, or fall accidents.
If accidents have occurred
If you have suffered any injury as a result of poor weather conditions on an oil rig within the last 3 years and it wasn’t your fault, you may be entitled to compensation. At Accident Advice Helpline our friendly and professional advisers are on hand 24/7 to provide help and advice, and you are under no obligation to proceed with any potential claims that may be discussed.
Alternatively, you can find out online in 30 seconds or less if you are eligible for compensation. Check out Accident Advice Helpline.
Date Published: November 21, 2013
Author: David Brown