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November 29, 2019

Two Equinor workers injured in Heimdal platform explosion

Two Equinor employees were injured in what the company called a “serious work-related incident” on its Heimdal platform in the North Sea on 28 November 2019.

By Umar Ali

Two Equinor employees were injured in what the company called a “serious work-related incident” on its Heimdal platform in the North Sea on 28 November 2019.

The incident occurred when a portable gas container on board the platform exploded, which was reported to Equinor’s emergency response centre at 18:06 Central European Time. There were 70 personnel on board Heimdal when the incident occurred.

The injured employees were treated by medical personnel on board Heimdal, and transported to Haukeland University Hospital and Stavanger University Hospital for further treatment.

In a statement, Equinor said that it was “following up” the injured personnel and their families, adding that extra personnel travelled out to the platform to assess the employees still on board.

The Heimdal platform is located in the Heimdal gas field at water depths of 120m on the 036 production licence, in the northern part of the North Sea. The Heimdal field was discovered in 1972, with production on the platform starting in 1985.

According to Equinor, the platform acts as a hub for the processing and distribution of gas, and is close to the border with the UK shelf as well as the Johan Sverdrup and Oseberg platforms.

Equinor holds an operating interest of 29.4%. Partners in the project include Petoro (20%), Total E&P Norge (16.7%), Spirit Energy (28.8%) and LOTOS Exploration and Production (5%).

Norwegian offshore safety watchdog Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA) announced on 29 November 2019 that a team comprising four specialists will fly out to the Heimdal platform with the police, to launch an investigation into the accident.

The principal objective of this investigation will be to establish the underlying and direct causes of the incident, with the PSA planning to publish its findings in a report once the investigation has concluded.

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