WWW.SHIPSANDOIL.COM
home   Picture of the Day     ship information   articles and features     news and views   PPUBLICATIONSA  webcam 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Locations of visitors to this page

SUMMARIES OF MAJOR  ACCIDENT REPORTS
(In event order)

THE KULLUK INCIDENT
December 2012
THE COSTA CONCORDIA
January 2012
THE TRINITY II
September 2011
THE DEEPWATER HORIZON
April 2010
THE BOURBON DOLPHIN
April 2007
THE STEVNS POWER
October 2003
THE OCEAN RANGER
February 1982
THE OCEAN EXPRESS
April 1976

PICTURE OF THE DAY
PIC OF THE DAY ARCHIVES
2007 - 77 Photographs
2008 - 101 Photographs
2009 - 124 Photographs
2010 - 118 Photographs
2011 - 100 Photographs
2012 - 97 Photographs

 

 

         

Go to 'Publications' to buy any of these books.

DON'T FORGET YOU CAN PURCHASE "THE HISTORY OF THE SUPPLY SHIP", "SUPPLY SHIP OPERATIONS" and "RIGMOVES" HERE FOR £52.50 TOGETHER

HOW IT USED TO BE

The reminiscence of a materials man will doubtless jog a few memories. The views below are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect those of MMASS or its employees. Its nice to see that David is confident that things have improved.

Back in the early days of oil industry when working hours legislation was not in existence the practices undertaken were to some extent, in my own opinion unlawful to say the least. The drilling industry is hard, rough and time is money. The cost of ship transportation and hire of rigs changes constantly. Therefore as time meant money one had to do whatever it took to get the job done. Today I am positive that all offshore locations have two store men onboard to ensure that each does not work any longer than his or her 12 hour stint. The law demands and new HSE ensures this is not abused. Back in the early 1980's the work hours were far removed from todays. The mere thought of someone having to work more than a 12-hour shift is unthinkable, but this was a regular occurrence on a certain rig at that time.

 My first offshore experience was on board the Tartan Alpha, for Texaco, employed as production roustabout where the norm was a shift pattern of 12 hours, plus any overtime worked. Then the decision was taken to stop training up the "Roustie" for operators, due to some gaining valuable experience and heading off for greener fields, or should that be blacker (oil) fields.

 Once it was known that there were a few of us deciding to move along I found myself employed by Dixylyn as materials man on the DF 96. It was at the time a good rig, food was great especially the Aberdeen butteries, the accommodation was okay (basic) but after a 12 hour day sufficient for one’s needs. When the rig move came about I was the only materials man onboard and I was about to experience a shift pattern that would today, be illegal and immoral to say the least. Most people working offshore today have no idea of what it was like back in the early 80's. One had to work when required or find oneself out of a job and back on the beach where pay was a lot poorer.

 The rig moved from Aberdeen to the southern North sea to drill a new well for Hamilton Brothers, there were a few other rigs in the vicinity at that time and one comes to mind was the Treasure Seeker.

 I arrived onboard on the Thursday (crew change) worked through material requisitions. On the Friday morning at 6 am all hell broke loose. We had arrived at the new location and the "back, load " of the last job began, containers full of tools, stabilisers, hole borers, and pack offs etc drill pipe. Then the boats arrived with the new drill equipment. The welder’s shack on deck became my home for the next four (4) days, yes four long 24 hour day without seeing my bed and having the chance to sit in the galley for a cup of tea and an Aberdeen buttery. The continual arrival and departure of boats was constant and the documentation/manifests were arriving attached to a container. The Welder at the time Gus helped with hot cups of coffee and kept tally on drill pipe to allow myself the chance to get a fast hot shower and change of clothes. From 6 am Friday to 11 pm Monday I never saw my bed.

 Being the one and only materials man meant being on 24/7 for the company man to shout on the tanoy" rig store man to company office". This continual bleating merely went in one ear and out the other. I was in a constant zombie state. How I managed to keep awake and to be sure that all containers and drill pipe and casing arrived onboard without any mistakes was a miracle indeed.

 Oh yes I made good money on that trip but what a price to pay.

 Eventually the boats departed location and things returned too normal. Oh there was one point when I told the onshore controller to "shove it where the sun don't shine" Two vessels arrived and departed that day (Saturday) one was the Wilma Mermaid and the other the Wilbur Mariner, one heading for Montrose and the other Peterhead. Now it was my responsibility to send to the beach a fax of ship end location and surprise, surprise, I got it wrong, I had sent a message to the beach saying that one boat was heading Peterhead and the other Montrose, of course I had, mistakenly mixed up the names of the ships, but it was little wonder considering my state of mind at that time. When the onshore guy came on the then satellite phone at $10 a minute, ranting and raving, I kindly advised that I would be on the next chopper back to the beach, his attitude change, and after the OIM Eddie told him of what hours I had just completed, he very kindly requested a new telex with the correct boats and locations

 Needless to say his retraction to a few choice words fell on deaf ears and Eddie the OIM was very undertstanding. Even on the night of that Monday a boat had arrived and it looked as if I would be asked to work on through making it a total of 5 days without sleep. But the OIM radioed the boats Captain to advise him to wait until morning, that sleep was long overdue and yes back up at 6 am for another day's work. If I had refused to work during that long, lost weekend I would have been out of work, the Rig Superintendent known at the time as “Run em off” had a reputation for running guys off if he saw them stand about on the deck. One roustabout only lasted 2 hours, arrived onboard, put on his work gear ,went on deck, was talking with the welder probably asking about routine or smoke break and he came on deck, saw the Rousti, went to the OIM and the guy was on the next chopper.

I have worked ashore now for almost twenty years, but it was to say the least an experience, and on ethat after all these years I will never forget. Once my overtime was paid I considered not returning for my next trip, but finally gave up offshore in January 1987.

David Wilkie.

TO RETURN TO FEATURES INDEX CLICK HERE

 
 
FEATURES

THE DEEPWATER HORIZON
Deepwater Horizon -The President's Report
Deepwater Horizon - The Progess of the Event

OTHER ACCIDENTS
The KULLUK Grounding
The Costa Concordia Report
The Costa Concordia Grounding
The Elgin Gas Leak
The Loss of the Normand Rough
The Bourbon Dolphin Accident
The Loss of the Stevns Power
Another Marine Disaster
Something About the P36
The Cormorant Alpha Accident
The Ocean Ranger Disaster
The Loss of the Ocean Express

OPERATIONS
The Life of the Oil Mariner
Offshore Technology and the Kursk
The Sovereign Explorer and the Black Marlin

SAFETY
Safety Case and SEMS
Practical Safety Case Development
Preventing Fires and Explosions Offshore
The ALARP Demonstration
PFEER, DCR and Verification
PFEER and the Dacon Scoop
Human Error and Heavy Weather Damage
Lifeboats & Offshore Installations
More about PFEER
The Offshore Safety Regime - Fit for the Next Decade
The Safety Case and its Future
Jigsaw
Collision Risk Management
Shuttle Tanker Collisions
A Good Prospect of Recovery

TECHNICAL
The History of the UT 704
The Peterhead Connection
Goodbye Kiss
Uses for New Ships
Supporting Deepwater Drilling
Jack-up Moving - An Overview
Seismic Surveying
Breaking the Ice
Tank Cleaning and the Environment
More about Mud Tank Cleaning
Datatrac
Tank Cleaning in 2004
Glossary of Terms

CREATIVE WRITING
An Unusual Investigation
Gaia and Oil Pollution
The True Price of Oil
Icebergs and Anchor-Handlers
Atlantic SOS
The Greatest Influence
How It Used to Be
Homemade Pizza
Goodbye Far Turbot
The Ship Manager
Running Aground
A Cook's Tale
Navigating the Channel
The Captain's Letter

GENERAL INTEREST
The Sealaunch Project
Ghost Ships of Hartlepool
Beam Him Up Scotty
Q790
The Bilbao OSV Conference