The U.S. Coast Guard has published its report documenting the findings from its investigation of the grounding of the Kulluk, Shell’s floating drilling platform, in the Gulf of Alaska on Dec. 31, 2012.
The report says that a series of events led to the grounding but that the most significant factor in the accident was the inadequate assessment and management of risks associated with a complex winter vessel movement in Alaska’s unique and challenging operating environment.
The safety recommendations resulting from the investigation include a recommendation that the Coast Guard commandant should partner with the Towing Safety Advisory Council to form a working group to develop a “task statement” addressing concerns relating to the Kulluk incident, including issues that the incident has raised and the towage of offshore drilling units in an Arctic marine environment.
Shell has issued a statement saying that it is reviewing the report.
“We appreciate the thorough investigation and will take any findings seriously,” wrote Shell spokeswoman Megan Baldino in a press release issued today. “Already, we have implemented lessons learned from our internal review of our 2012 operations. Those improvements will be measured against the findings in the USCG report as well as recommendations from the US Department of Interior.”
See story in April 13 issue, available online at 11 a.m., Friday, April 11 at www.PetroleumNews.com