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Keeping Up with Federal Regulations

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Keeping up with which federal governmental regulatory organization should concern Riggers involved in Offshore Oil Drilling and Production operations can be quite daunting. Bear with us here.

In the recent past the Minerals Management Service (MMS) of the United States Department of the Interior over sought safety and environmental issues of interest to Riggers. This organization later became known as the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE). On October 1, 2011 a major reorganization of BOEMRE resulted in its replacement with two separate organizations: (1) the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and (2) the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE).

As it stands today, of interest to Riggers is the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE). In addition to training, safety, and incident reporting, it is also responsible for permitting and inspections of offshore oil and gas operations, as well as offshore regulatory programs, inspections, spill response, and environmental compliance programs. Their website is at

When conducting research on accident, incident, and safety statistics, and summary reports, references can be made to MMS, BOEMRE, and BSEE depending on date.

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According to Joe Sologub, American Petroleum Institute (API) Recommended Practice (RP) Number 2D* committee co-chairman, a group of industry professionals came together between May 2009 and March 2010 and reviewed Offshore Oil Drilling lifting incidents reported from 2006 and 2009. The group was referred to as the SLC or The Safe Lifting Committee. Here are some interesting results from that review (and see the graph that has produced that follows):

After the review, the Safe Lifting Committee concluded that:

In the hope of reducing and eliminating lifting incidents, the Safe Lifting Committee made several recommendations to Operators, Trade Organizations, and Regulators regarding gaps and deficiencies.
* The American Petroleum Institute (API) publishes many recommended practices (RPs). Recommended Practice 2D is entitled Recommended Practice for Operation and Maintenance of Offshore Cranes. It contains sections covering Riggers and rigging operations. 
† Statistical data source: