Occupational Health and Safety – Oil and gas manufacturing or often shortened to oil and gas (Offshore Workers) is one of the most important industries because it is this industry that produces energy to meet the world’s increasing energy consumption.
The oil and gas industry (Offshore Workers) generally carries out five stages of activities, namely exploration, production, processing, transportation, and marketing.
Industries engaged in oil and gas have a high risk in the upstream sector, namely in management and drilling activities.
In addition, the downstream sector, namely in the processing and distribution activities, also has almost the same risk as the upstream sector.
As we know, oil and gas exploration and production activities are included in the category of activities with a high level of danger, meanwhile the operating environment on the high seas also contains a high potential for danger.
With two sources of danger at once, namely system processes and marine hazards, it can be said that offshore oil operations are very high risk operations.
Oil and gas plant hazard factors
- Production process
The dangers of the production process from the work of oil and gas factories are the potential hazards that originate or are caused by several activities carried out in the production process, which are very dependent on:
Materials and equipment used, activities and types of activities carried out.
Potential safety hazards are found in tools/machines, as well as materials used in the production process, such as forklifts (hit), gancu (stabbed), pallets (stripped), and raw materials (overwhelmed, dropped from a pile of raw materials), feed additives (damaged) eyes due to exposure to feed additive dust), cutters, lathes/welding machines (eye damage due to furious splashes, abrasions due to exposure to hot parts, and lung damage due to inhalation of welding dust), burns due to gas leaks, pinched parts, hot flashes from automatic blowdown.
Work accidents at oil and gas plants are usually in drilling related to unexpected gas bursts from wells due to high pressure.
Broadly speaking, there are two main categories of drilling accidents, first is intense and prolonged release of hydrocarbons, second is hydrocarbon spills and gas outbursts during drilling operations.
- Chemical Hazard
In the oil refinery production process, chemicals are sometimes used which are harmful to human health and safety as well as the environment.
These potential hazards can enter or affect the body of workers through: inhalation (through breathing), ingestion (through the mouth to the digestive tract), skin contact (through the skin). The occurrence of the effect of chemical potential on the body of the workforce is very dependent on the type of chemical or contaminant.
- Factors Unsafe Conditions, Unsafe Actions, Management System
Every accident does not just happen, but there are factors that cause it. If we can know these factors, then we can take preventive or countermeasures against these accidents.
The main causes of accidents are:
- Kondisi tidak aman (unsafe condition)
This relates to machines / work tools such as machines that are damaged or not functioning properly. In addition, unsafe conditions can also be in the form of unsupportive working conditions, such as poor lighting, noisy conditions, poor hygiene and installations.
Unsafe conditions can also be caused by poor production methods/processes, imperfect security, damaged work equipment, poor housekeeping, poor lighting, work environment with exposure to B3 or radiation, work environment with high noise , Dirty and slippery workplace.
- Tindakan tidak aman (unsafe action)
These unsafe acts are more related to personal workers, including: using equipment that is not good, reckless at work, not using personal protective equipment or doing things without authority, operating machinery/equipment that is not their responsibility, using inappropriate equipment, working while joking, being indifferent/ignorant, working in a drunken state, disobeying procedures/regulations, removing safety equipment, running machines exceeding the specified speed, lifting/transporting excessively, not wearing personal protective equipment.
- Weaknesses of management system
The weakness of this management system is often related to the work procedure system that is not clear or the absence of standards that can be a reference for workers in carrying out their work activities.
Of the factors above, of course, will also affect the work environment and the surrounding living environment. For the workers themselves, of course, it will result in injury if the accident is very fatal, while for the environment there will be disturbances in the balance of the ecosystem and even a decrease in the quality of the environment.
This decrease in environmental quality is usually caused by the presence of residual materials from the production process that still contain hazardous chemicals. These hazardous chemicals occur not only as a result of industrial accidents, but even more often as a result of poor industrial waste treatment systems.
Other Risk Factors
The other risk factors that are often found in oil and gas factories are as follows:
Explosions can cause very high air pressure accompanied by flames. After that will be followed by a black smoke. The explosion propagating in the air turbulence hole will be more powerful and can cause fatal damage.
When the accumulated gases that are retained in offshore exploration experience a great vibration, caused by various things, such as the movement of the engine wheels, the blow of the air from the compressor and the like, so that the gas is lifted into the air (flying) and then forms a gas cloud. in explosive limit conditions and when there is ignition, there will be an explosion accompanied by a fire.
- Storm in the exploration area
The weather in offshore exploration activities will determine the operation of an oil mining process. Where in bad weather can cause storms in the area around the exploration .
Special Hazards Arise From Crude Oil
Crude oil is a dark, sticky, highly flammable liquid that can be burned to produce energy. Together with natural gas, crude oil is a very powerful and strategic source of fuel.
The dangers that need attention in addition to general things are also about the dangers of high crude oil explosions. Vapors and gases are explosive and produce toxic fumes.
Crude Oil also contains high sulfur which can be dangerous.
Prevention of the dangers of oil and gas plants
After seeing the process that occurs in an oil refinery and the potential hazards that occur in an oil refinery, the overall accident prevention needed is:
- Regulations relating to the environment and industrial planning
- Standardization, both in the treatment of industrial raw materials, procurement of security equipment, as well as from the waste produced so as not to disturb the quality of the environment
- Conducted training and persuasive actions for employers and workers so that they are expected to be more careful in carrying out work, especially those using equipment or chemicals that can endanger themselves and the environment.