Safety of Fired Vessels on Offshore Oil and Gas Platforms in the Gulf of Mexico

Fired pressure vessels are necessary to safely contain liquids or gases at high pressure, and they’re prevalent in the oil and gas industry.

Unfortunately, recent inspections have uncovered a large number of cracked and damaged vessels on worksites.

In October of 2018, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) published a review of the safety incidents that occurred throughout the Gulf of Mexico.

From January 2016 through May 2018, 17 fired vessel incidents were reported to the BSEE by 12 different operators. In addition, the BSEE issued 76 incidents of non-compliance for fired vessels during this same period.

What Are Fired Vessels?

A fired pressure vessel is used to hold liquids or gases at a pressure that differs from the ambient pressure, typically at a high pressure of 15 psig or more. An external heat source, which may be direct or indirect, is used to maintain the trapped liquid or gas at high pressure.

Fired pressure vessels are typically used in the following industrial settings:

  • Electrical
  • Automation
  • Oil and gas
  • Fire protection
  • Petrochemicals

Fired Vessel Accidents

Cracked and damaged vessels may rupture and leak, leading to poisonings, suffocations, fires, and explosions. Boilers, wherein fuel is burned to heat water, are the most common type of fired pressure vessel. Common boiler accidents include explosions caused by excessive internal steam pressure, and overheating due to a lack of water.

Other causes of fixed vessel accidents include:

  • Poorly-insulated areas
  • Insufficient worker training
  • Lack of equipment maintenance
  • Lack of routine equipment inspections
  • Improper handling of hazardous materials
  • Failure to maintain safety equipment and systems

Injured in a Fired Vessel Accident

Proper design, installation, operation, and maintenance of fired pressure vessels are crucial components for worker safety. If you were injured due to a fired pressure vessel accident, you may be entitled to receive payments for your medical bills, loss of income, and pain and suffering.

You need an experienced attorney to secure the compensation you deserve. To learn more, contact the law offices of Steve M. Lee, P.C., by clicking the Live Chat button on this page.

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