In an interview with David Forsyth, Chief Surveyor at the American Bureau of Shipping, John Mainwaring of Rigzone asked point-blank, “What does the industry need to do in order to improve jackup safety?”.

In his response, Forsyth wasted no time in pointing out the importance of regular maintenance in improving offshore safety, particularly as the industry’s jackup fleet continues to age.

“Ageing rigs do require a lot more attention. I think that a little closer analysis when coming on and off location is needed,” said Forsyth, “The equipment ages, the structure ages, and the unit just requires a lot more maintenance … There are fatigue issues, there are issues with wastage and diminution of the structure because of the saltwater atmosphere that the structure works in. But that can easily be fixed with normal maintenance.”

There you have it, in the words of the Chief Surveyor himself for the entity responsible for regulating all U.S. jackup rigs, the best way to make them safe and, ultimately, prevent offshore accidents is to perform regular maintenance.

And with 192 jackup rigs in operation that are over 31 years old, the need for maintenance is greater than ever.

To that end, the ABS conducts annual surveys of all rigs as well as a Dry Dock Survey two times each five-year period that the vessel is operational in an effort to keep oil companies honest.

Unfortunately, with oil prices low, the temptation remains for companies to save money by cutting corners–even on something as critical as regular maintenance.

While these short-sighted measures may save a company some money on the front end, they often end up costing much more in the long run.

If you or a loved one has been injured or worse on a poorly-maintained jackup rig, you need to speak with an experienced Jones Act lawyer as soon as possible.

Otherwise, you could be left hurt, unable to work and without full compensation for your injuries and other damages.



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