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Offshore Installations and Pipeline Works (Management and Administration) Regulations 1995: Guidance on Identification of Offshore Installations

  • Operations notice: 39
  • Issue date: May 2009


This Notice provides guidance for the clear identification of installations as required by the Offshore Installation and Pipeline Works (Management and Administration) Regulations 1995, Regulation 19. Each installation has to be readily identifiable on approach, by sea or air, by the use of unambiguous signage and effective aeronautical communication.


Helicopter pilots and operators have reported a number of 'wrong rig' landings to the CAA. Instances have occurred when radio call signs, helideck markings and installation side sign identification have been inconsistent. This has led to confusion among pilots in identifying installations and has consequently resulted in potentially serious 'wrong rig' landings.

Action required

Dutyholders should check that the hardware and management systems in place for identification of their installations do not have the potential to cause confusion or ambiguity to any approaching helicopter. It is recommended that, where practicable, the radio call sign, helideck markings and side signage should be identical; helicopter operators should be consulted on their acceptability for flight operations.

If the name of the installation changes, the signage and radio call sign should be promptly modified to show this. All interested parties should be informed.

Offshore Installations: Coast Protection Act 1949, Annex D

It is recommended that dutyholders examine new technology available for use in side signage, which offers enhanced visibility (particularly at night) and long component life, eg high intensity lamps.

Relevant legal requirements

The relevant legal requirements are: Offshore Installations and Pipeline Works (Management and Administration) Regulations 1995, Regulation 12 Communication and Regulation 19 Identification of the offshore installation.


A guide to the Offshore Installations and Pipeline Works (Management and Administration) Regulations 1995 L70 Second edition HSE Books 1995 ISBN 0 7176 2572 9.
Guidance on the marking of offshore installations is contained in: Standard marking schedules for offshore installations. Copies can be obtained from:

Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC),

Environmental Management Team,
4th Floor,
Atholl House,
86-88 Guild Street,
Aberdeen AB11 6AR

Tel: 01224 254050
Fax: 01224 254019

This guidance is issued by the Health and Safety Executive. Following the guidance is not compulsory and you are free to take other action. But if you do follow the guidance you will normally be doing enough to comply with the law. Health and safety inspectors seek to secure compliance with the law and may refer to this guidance as illustrating good practice

Updated 2017-10-17