Offshore Energy 2017 at the RAI Convention Center in Amsterdam saw dropped object prevention specialists Dropsafe® enter the European safety market. The risks to personnel and assets from dropped objects is well understood in the oil and gas industry with efforts to mitigate the dangers spear headed by DROPS, the energy industry organisation Dropped Object Prevention Scheme (www.dropsonline.org). However, awareness of the risks presented by dropped objects in the offshore renewable energy is slowly awakening. The offshore wind industry has always been aware of the risks to life and assets from heavy lifting but has taken time to appreciate that smaller objects falling from height also presents significant risks. In 2017, the G+ Global Offshore Wind Health & Safety Organisation, commenced a significant initiative to understand and control these risks, so Dropsafe’s attendance at Offshore Energy was timely.
Dropsafe introduced the new Dropsafe BarrierTM to the European offshore energy industry as a solution to the risk of tools and material falling through the railings of scaffolding, walkways and gangways. This strong, lightweight and cost effective barrier provides an immediate solution to dropped object risks from wind turbine transition pieces or walk to work gangways which are now commonly operated in windfarms. The Dropsafe Barrier partners with Dropsafe NetsTM to provide both horizontal and vertical dropped object prevention solutions. Dropsafe Nets are patented safety devices, which securely enclose and tether overhead fixtures to prevent dropped and falling objects. Simple and effective, Dropsafe Nets and Dropsafe Barriers are instant safety solutions available for a variety of offshore scenarios.
Chairman of the National Workboat Association’s, Safety Forum visited the stand and stated, “2018 will be a good year for dropped object prevention solution providers.” When asked to elaborate, he explained that, “as both a former Master of crew transfer vessels in the offshore wind industry as well as Chairman of the Safety Forum, he has experienced a wide variety dropped object incidents where materials have fallen onto the decks of workboats. Through the NWA Safety Forum he has worked closely with industry stakeholders to raise the profile of the risk.” “Any company with cost effective, innovative and easy to retro to retrofit solutions to reduce the risk to my crews and clients will be greatly welcomed,” Mr. Forster concluded.
Mike Rice, Dropsafe’s new Business Unit Manager, followed up by stating that “Dropsafe is not just about selling tools, as its aim is to educate industry professionals about the risk from dropped objects and the solutions will sell themselves.” This sentiment was echoed by Eden Cantre, Global Business Development Manager when she explained that “even in the terrible market conditions that the offshore drilling industry is experiencing, rig operators are including dropped object prevention solutions in their safety budget.” She later continued that “Rig Managers understand that the downtime and expense caused by the investigation into a dropped object incident outweighs the investment in prevention”.
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