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Renewables

Tackling the neglected hazard of Dropped Objects in global offshore wind operations

A Neglected Hazard?

 

Dropped Objects pose a significant and damaging risk to the rapidly expanding renewable energy industry, and particularly the offshore wind sector.

Dropped Object incidents can occur at offshore wind sites as a result of unsuitable operational processes, human error or environmental factors.

They can take place during installation, maintenance or decommissioning processes – at the foundations, nacelle or blades, in the tower, or on installation and service vessels. Dropped Objects can also happen during routine operations, for example if a machinery part suffers severe corrosion over time and falls from the installation.

Dropped Objects in offshore wind

 

Mitigating the risk

Dropsafe works with developers and operators in the wind energy industry to develop best practice Dropped Object prevention systems and strategies that do not compromise on value and cost efficiency.

The Dropsafe Barrier, the Dropsafe Net and the Dropsafe Pouch can be deployed to effectively prevent Dropped Objects, including tools dropped by technicians, items lifted from Crew Transfer Vessels and Service Operation Vessels and smaller items fitted to the wind turbine generator like nuts and bolts, lights, ventilation louvres or hatches.

Working directly with asset owners and site managers, Dropsafe also develops custom solutions for mitigating the risk of Dropped Objects on wind farms, creating bespoke systems to meet market and technology-specific requirements.

 

Dropped Objects in offshore wind

Installing Dropped Object prevention technology at Formosa I allows us to take a best practice approach and set the bar high for health and safety on our own projects as well as for the wider Taiwanese industry.

Paul Hammond, FDN Installation Manager, Formosa 1 Offshore Wind Farm

Products

Explore our Dropped Object prevention solutions

Case Studies

Offshore Wind: Bespoke Net

Dropsafe designs and installs custom net for offshore renewable energy project

The development team at Formosa 1 Offshore Wind Farm has adopted Dropsafe technology across 20 Siemens Gamesa turbines at Taiwan’s first operational offshore wind project.

Formosa 1 has taken an industry-leading approach, having Dropsafe engineer a bespoke net design, made of SUS 316 Japanese stainless steel. The nets, each measuring more than 20 metres long, have been installed between the external landing platform and the tower of the SWT-6.0-154 turbines to prevent potential dropped objects from falling into the sea.

Read case studies for all Dropsafe products on our News page.

Offshore Wind: Dropped Object Incident

Steel coil falls on wind farm construction site

A contractor breaks their wrist after being struck by a falling 50kg steel wire coil on the pre-construction site for an offshore wind farm off the East Coast of England.

This incident could have been prevented if the manufacturer had carried out a sufficient risk assessment, putting in place simple measures to reduce the risk of injury from dropped objects. This incident was covered in national press, resulting in multiple impacts including injury to personnel as well as financial and reputational damage.

Read case studies for all Dropsafe products on our News page.

Case Study 1

Offshore Wind: Bespoke Net

Dropsafe designs and installs custom net for offshore renewable energy project

The development team at Formosa 1 Offshore Wind Farm has adopted Dropsafe technology across 20 Siemens Gamesa turbines at Taiwan’s first operational offshore wind project.

Formosa 1 has taken an industry-leading approach, having Dropsafe engineer a bespoke net design, made of SUS 316 Japanese stainless steel. The nets, each measuring more than 20 metres long, have been installed between the external landing platform and the tower of the SWT-6.0-154 turbines to prevent potential dropped objects from falling into the sea.

Offshore Wind: Dropped Object Incident

Steel coil falls on wind farm construction site

A contractor breaks their wrist after being struck by a falling 50kg steel wire coil on the pre-construction site for an offshore wind farm off the East Coast of England.

This incident could have been prevented if the manufacturer had carried out a sufficient risk assessment, putting in place simple measures to reduce the risk of injury from dropped objects. This incident was covered in national press, resulting in multiple impacts including injury to personnel as well as financial and reputational damage.

Additional Resources

G+ Reliable Securing Booklet: What is the best practice approach to Dropped Object prevention in Offshore Wind?

What practical advice does the G+ Global Offshore Wind DROPS Reliable Securing Booklet for Offshore Wind offer for a best practice approach to mitigate Dropped Object risk? In June 2019, G+ Global Offshore Wind published its 2018 Incident Data Report which stated that in 2018, there were 66 reported dropped object incidents, representing a reduction of […]

G+ Reliable Securing Guidelines Show Practical Pathway to Offshore Wind Drops Prevention

Much-needed “reliable securing” guidelines published by Offshore Wind safety organisation G+ to facilitate industry wide adoption of best practice prevention systems    Hong Kong, July 29 2019 – The publication of the Reliable Securing Booklet for Offshore Wind by G+, the global health and safety organisation for the Offshore Wind industry, has provided much-needed safety […]

Creating Transparency Around Offshore Wind’s Neglected Hazard

Mike Rice, Commercial Director, Dropsafe   Safety has always been a priority in the rapidly growing offshore wind sector, but in June the Global Offshore Wind conference in London saw the issue of Dropped Objects addressed on an industry panel for the first time. Alongside this, G+ published its annual Incident Data Report, stating that […]

Report: The Neglected Hazard

Collating the latest data on Dropped Object incidents, Dropsafe’s white paper, The Neglected Hazard: A guide to Dropped Object risks in offshore wind shows that Dropped Objects are an ever-present, increasing threat to safe and cost-effective project development and operations in offshore wind.