Dropped object during cargo handling operations

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Alert ID: 
Description of Process: 

Unloading of palletised blower motors from a shelved cargo carrying unit (CCU)

Description of Incident: 

During cargo handling operations a cargo carrying unit (CCU) was placed on the moving pipedeck where it was required to be unloaded. When opened, the CCU was found to be a shelved unit containing two palletised blower motors weighing 95kgs each, one on the lower level and the other on the shelf.

The deck crew (Deck Team Lead & Deck Op) noted this and the DTL stated it was his intention to remove only the lower motor and send the second motor back onshore for reloading.

The DTL found the upper motor insecure and intended to re-secure the motor before back loading. In order to gain access to the motor, a nearby barrel was used as a “hop up”. The plastic shrink wrap was removed and, as the DTL was about to place a sling on the motor to shift it back in place within the container, the pallet moved and tipped forward.  This resulted in the motor falling from height onto the deck, causing extensive damage to the motor.

No one was injured during the incident. The Deck Op had been working below the shelf prior to the DTL establishing there was an issue but had moved back from the container at the requested of the DTL.  This could have resulted in serious personal injury.

Good Practice Guidance: 
  • Counsel / coach work parties with respect to intervention and stopping the job / task when unsafe conditions / behaviours are observed.
  • Reinforce the requirement to formally risk assess all deviations from routine operations with work parties.
  • Raise a non-conformance with vendor highlighting that all loads over 25kg should be shipped offshore in open top containers.
  • Oil & Gas UK ‘Best Practice for the Safe Packing & Handling of Cargo to and from Offshore Locations’ booklet provides guidance; section 9.7.3.v "When loading CCUs, consideration should be given to manual handling constraints and take into account any operator / installations specific requirements, using the Cargo Shipping Matrices provided. Always load heavier cargo at the bottom of the container and lighter materials on the shelf if using a shelved container. Heavy items over 25 kg should generally be shipped in open CCUs.’"
  • Reinforce site safety rules and hazards associated with inappropriate use of tools/equipment
Causes and consequences of incident or accident: 
Moving, flying or falling object
Handling, lifting or carrying
Cause and consequence of incident or accident, if not listed above: 
Not following best practice standards, failure to identify requirement to 'Stop the Job' and assess risks
Contributing factor: 
Control of work