ABS issues publication on best practices for safer FPSO operations

ABS issues publication on best practices for safer FPSO operations

Photo: SBM Offshore

ABS has issued a new publication outlining industry best practices for addressing the safety challenges posed by an aging global floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) fleet.

Enhancing Safety on FPSOs, Practical Considerations for Operations and Maintenance is the product of an ABS-led working group consisting of Chevron, Shell Trading (US) Company, Petrobras, MODEC, and SBM as well as The Bahamas Maritime Authority (BMA), the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) Registry, and the US Coast Guard Eighth District.

The best practices discussed in the publication focus on areas such as tank design and arrangement, cleaning and inspection, risk-based inspection of hull structures, composite repair tracking, and carrying out repairs while operating. This is the second document in a series setting out best practices to enhance safety of FPSOs.

ABS has also developed its rules, with a significant number of changes applicable to FPSOs, both for existing units and for new facilities. These rule changes are intended to address many of the risks related to aging FPSOs from both a design and a maintenance perspective.

ABS said a total of 55 FPSO units in the global fleet are reaching the end of their design life in the next five years, a further five already have life extension in place, and a further 19 are currently being evaluated for life extension. The efforts of the working group will produce outcomes to assist with the evaluation and potential acceptance of life extension.

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