2019IADC, Regulation, and LegislationSafety and ESGSeptember/October

2018 ISP shows rise in incident rates and fatalities, underscores need for a refocus on safety

Industrywide LTI rate increased by 31.25% last year, and recordables rate was 25.93% higher compared to 2017; number of fatalities rose to 13

By Jay Stracke, Editorial Assistant

Amid a challenging market and decreased rig demand, the drilling industry saw a pullback in its safety performance last year. According to the 2018 report of the IADC Incident Statistics Program (ISP), the industry’s lost-time incidence (LTI) rate reached 0.21. That represents a 31.25% increase over the 2017 LTI rate of 0.16. Additionally, the recordable incidence rate went up from 0.54 in 2017 to 0.68 in 2018, a 25.93% increase.

These numbers appear to follow historical trends where incidents increase as the industry comes out of a downturn. “It is critical that we reverse this trend, as each incident can have lasting impacts on the families and companies involved, as well as the business as a whole,” Rhett Winter, IADC’s Director Government & Industry Affairs – Onshore, said. “Additionally, for an industry like ours that continuously aims to raise the bar, incidents also tend to warrant further scrutiny from the public and/or regulator.”

The industry also saw an increase in fatalities last year, with a total of 13 fatalities reported in 2018 compared with 10 in 2017. Four fatalities each were reported in the US and the Middle East, three in Africa, as well as one each in Canada and South America. In terms of activity, five of the fatalities occurred during tripping in/out. In terms of occupation, a third of the fatalities happened to floormen.

The IADC ISP report is calculated based on incidents per 200,000 manhours. In 2018, a total of 89 contractors took part in the ISP. Nearly 385 million manhours were worked among the participating contractors, with these same contractors reporting 1,305 recordable incidents and 389 LTIs.

Safety data for land and offshore operations are collated separately for the nine geographic regions reported. The ISP is not designed to draw regional comparisons but to supply companies with tools to effectively measure their efforts and make necessary improvements each year.

“Although the industry continually makes strides and efforts toward improving safety, incidents still occur,” Jason McFarland, IADC President, said. “As an industry, we have a responsibility to work toward zero incidents, not only to improve efficiency but also to make certain that every person on the rig is guaranteed a safe working environment and the chance to return home to their loved ones.”

Please reference the graphs for detailed results from the 2018 ISP. DC

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