Preliminary analysis of the Piper Alpha disaster by applying a SSMS model

J. R. Santos-Reyes, A. N. Beard

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

    1 Citation (Scopus)

    Abstract

    A Systemic Safety Management System (SSMS) model has been developed. The SSMS aims to maintain risk within an acceptable range in the operations of any organization in a coherent way. If the features of the model; i.e., the systems, their associated functions, and the channels of communication are in place and working effectively then the probability of an accident should be less than otherwise. The model is capable of being applied proactively in the case of a new system or an existing one as well as reactively. In the latter case a past failure, whether disastrous or not, may be examined using the SSMS model. In this way, lessons may be drawn from past accidents. The paper presents some preliminary results of a systemic analysis of the Piper Alpha disaster. Piper Alpha disaster may be regarded as the most serious accident on Britain's oil and gas offshore industry. The accident occurred on 6th July 1988 and claimed 165 lives. The methodology has been to model some features of the accident by using two characteristics of the SSMS: {1} the concept of recursive structure & {2} the structural organization (i.e. Systems 1-5) and their associated channels of communication. Further analysis would be expected to reveal the performance, or lack of it, of the functions associated with Systems 1-5. It is hoped that the model will be used as a tool for analyzing past failures and to help to identify 'learning points', which are relevant for preventing accidents on the oil and gas industry. © 2007 Taylor & Francis Group.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the European Safety and Reliability Conference 2007, ESREL 2007 - Risk, Reliability and Societal Safety
    Pages2517-2525
    Number of pages9
    Volume3
    Publication statusPublished - 2007
    EventEuropean Safety and Reliability Conference 2007, ESREL 2007 - Risk, Reliability and Societal Safety - Stavanger, Norway
    Duration: 25 Jun 200727 Jun 2007

    Conference

    ConferenceEuropean Safety and Reliability Conference 2007, ESREL 2007 - Risk, Reliability and Societal Safety
    CountryNorway
    CityStavanger
    Period25/06/0727/06/07

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  • Cite this

    Santos-Reyes, J. R., & Beard, A. N. (2007). Preliminary analysis of the Piper Alpha disaster by applying a SSMS model. In Proceedings of the European Safety and Reliability Conference 2007, ESREL 2007 - Risk, Reliability and Societal Safety (Vol. 3, pp. 2517-2525)