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Asad, M M, Hassan, R B, Sherwani, F, Abbas, Z, Shahbaz, M S and Soomro, Q M (2019) Identification of effective safety risk mitigating factors for well control drilling operation. Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology, 17(01), 218–29.
- Type: Journal Article
- Keywords: Risk management; Risk assessment; Oil and gas; Drilling safety; Safety and health; Well control operation;
- ISBN/ISSN: 1726-0531
- URL: https://doi.org/10.1108/JEDT-04-2018-0068
Every year, hundreds of people have died and thousands have been injured because of insufficient management of well control at oil and gas drilling and production sites. Major causes which have been reported in previous studies included uncontrollable blowouts and failure of blowout preventers because of insufficient safety practices. These onshore and offshore blowout disasters not only harm the work force but also critically affect the environment and marine life. In this research paper, a detailed quantitative survey and qualitative risk assessments (RA) have been carried out for assessing the potentially hazardous activities associated with well control along with their appropriate controls and risk reduction factors and mitigating measures in Middle East and south East Asian countries.
Design/methodology/approachThe sequential explanatory research design has been adopted in this study. Whereas, descriptive statistical approach has been used for the quantitative data analysis of this study. While, in-depth interview approach has been used for qualitative data collection. Similarly, what-if analysis method has been adopted in this study for the identification of effective safety and health risk mitigating factors because it provides in-depth information from health and safety environment experts. FindingsThe cumulative quantitative results based on the response from Saudi Arabian drilling industry have indicated that the well control operation is highly hazardous then Malaysian and Pakistani oil and gas industries. Likewise, findings from what-if analysis approach demonstrate that the drilling crewmembers have repetitively faced life threatening hazards which occur (safety and chemical) during well control onshore and offshore operation because of oil base mud, confined space at site, pinch points and falling during working on blow out preventers. According to the overall result, respondents have highly recommended engineering and administrative hazard controlling factors as most suitable for the elimination of safety and chemical hazards during well control activities. Practical implicationsBesides, the developed methodological framework for the identification of suitable hazard controls can also be effectively used for potential hazards reorganization and identification of suitable hazard controls for other drilling and production industries and regions for accident prevention and safety and health management. Originality/valueThis is a first comparative research study which has been carried out in Malaysian, Saudi Arabian and Pakistani onshore and offshore oil and gas industries for well control health and safety management and reorganization of most effective hazards mitigating factors at drilling sites.