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PSA investigates incident at Hammerfest LNG

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LNG Industry,

The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA) has decided to investigate an incident at Equinor’s Hammerfest LNG plant in northern Norway. The facility has been operated over time with weaknesses in its safety-critical equipment.

Equinor shut down the plant on 11 March 2019 in order to repair deficiencies in a number of safety valves there. A total of 190 of these devices were missing heating cables and insulation.

The overall position at the plant was considered by Equinor to be so serious and uncertain that it was necessary to implement a shutdown and repair programme.

Earlier surveys conducted by the company had identified the condition of these valves, without their weaknesses being corrected.

The PSA’s investigation is now under way, and the police have been informed that it is being carried out.

In connection with the investigation, the PSA will:

  • Review and clarify conditions related to the actual status of the safety valves.
  • Map and assess safety-related conditions.
  • Describe the actual and potential consequences.
  • Assess the causes of the incident.
  • Clarify responsibilities.
  • Use the necessary enforcement powers to correct possible breaches of the regulations.
  • Make the results of the investigation public.
  • Contribute to experience transfer and learning for other players in the petroleum industry.

The investigation will be summed up in a report published on the PSA’s website.

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