Offshore Risk Assessment & Maintenance: How We Can Help

We often tell clients that we make our products for environments, like hazardous work areas with an explosion risk, where every second counts.

Of course, more than ‘just’ time is at stake: the massive financial impact of a site becoming non-operational plus, most of all, the safety of colleagues also depends on the right risk assessment, the right maintenance and the right equipment.

There are few worksites where this is more vital than the offshore oil and gas facilities across the globe. And that’s exactly why SA Equip’s heat, light, air and power products are often trusted to perform in these settings.

Because every task involved in safely keeping an offshore facility in operation begins with risk assessment, we’ve produced a quick read overview of offshore risk management and outlined how preventative maintenance plays a key role too.

Plus, read on to also discover real-life examples demonstrating how we can make safer and more efficient offshore maintenance and repairs possible.

In many cases a company will use a Permit to Work approach within its overall Safety Management System (a term for the organisation’s overarching process for managing safety risks).


Management of risk offshore has, for obvious reasons, little margin for error.

The UK’s health and safety authorities recorded six fatal injuries in the ten years leading up to 2019 with 75 ‘over seven day’ impact injuries registered that year alone.

Meanwhile, health and safety concerns reported to the HSE were followed-up 39 times in 2019 with 174 planned inspections carried out and 22 enforcement notices issued.

Working to maintain safe working and avoid the consequences of an injury on an offshore facility will always begin, of course, with a risk assessment.

These simply:

• Identify potential hazards

• Assess the probability of occurrence 

• Determine the potential consequences

To produce recommendations covering prevention, mitigation and recovery.

In many cases a company will use a Permit to Work approach within its overall Safety Management System (a term for the organisation’s overarching process for managing safety risks).

The Permit to Work, used to control certain types of work by requiring colleagues to maintain relevant risk assessments, may include:

• A work instruction

• A maintenance procedure  

• A local procedure

• An operational procedure 

• A checklist 

• A permit

The documents, in short, mean work must be carried out against previously agreed safety procedures.

Important note: the physical Permit to Work issued doesn’t automatically make a job safer but if colleagues actively engage with the process, it creates a reduced risk to everyone involved in a task.


Much of the work involved in keeping a safe offshore facility in operation involves preventative maintenance as opposed to reactive repairs.

Some of the more vital tasks include:

• Pumproom bilges: Including work to avoid the escape of hydrocarbon liquids or vapour into the pumproom

• Pipeline condition: Such as visual inspections to confirm condition

• Critical bolts: Checks to ensure critical bolts on cargo pumps and fittings are secure

• Emergency escape routes: Including confirmation of proper markings and lack of obstructions

The common theme? A sound maintenance routine and dedicated work to ensure an accident or injury is avoided by focussing on areas where a preventable risk to colleagues could arise.

A safe working environment involves more than thinking about the safety steps needed for a particular task, it also requires preventative work to avoid risks occurring in the wider area.


Because risk assessments must be carried out when any modifications to an offshore facility are being planned and, of course, the equipment itself must be safe, the choice of the right equipment to carry out and facilitate work under the terms of the risk assessment is absolutely vital.

SA Equip’s certified and portable heat, light, air and power products are used by many offshore professionals across the world as they have been designed and engineered in the UK to extremely high standards specifically to address risks, such as working in areas where an explosion could occur, while allowing faster, smarter working.

Some examples showing how the expert selection of specialist equipment led to a more better efficiency or excellent management of risk include:

• A smarter motor rebuild solution: Engineers on the North Sea’s Gryphon Alpha saved hundreds of thousands of pounds in freight, downtime, rebuild and fitting costs by drying the DC motor of a damp water injection pump on-site using a portable SA FLEXIHEAT EX heater.

• Safer sight: A number of Shell Nederland Raffinaderij B.V. pumps weren’t being sufficiently covered by standard lighting. SA LUMIN EX tasklights were chosen due to their certified, IP66 water and dust-proof spec to create a safer, easier working area.

• Reduced working hours: At Rhyl Field, power and light solutions were needed despite the facility being generally unmanned and power sockets being in poor condition. ATEX certified SA POWERNET EX mains distribution units were provided in many options with SA POWERNET EX extension leads and splitter boxes used extensively to take power to the work sites to power SA LUMIN EX rechargeable floodlights which were supplied for temporary lighting throughout the installation. All in all, quick and easy installation of safe working with easily transportable equipment meaning minimal working hours.

Discover more case studies showing how safer, quicker and – ultimately – cost-saving working can be made possible with the right choice of SA Equip portable EX equipment.

What makes SA Equip different? We bring almost 100 years of pacesetting service and knowledge – with a foundation in the most extreme shipping and oil industry environments – to global clients across aerospace, shipping, defence, utilities, pharmaceuticals, distilling, power stations and more.