RR397 - An evaluation of current legislative requirements for verification of elements critical to the safety of offshore installations

This report presents and discusses research undertaken to evaluate the outcomes of the amendment made in 1996 to the Offshore Installations (Safety Case) Regulations (1992) which introduced a requirement for the Verification of the Safety-Critical Elements of an offshore installation by an Independent and Competent Person (ICP). Prior to the introduction of Verification, offshore installations were required to have a Certificate of Fitness and the present work, by using the supposed continuation of that Certification regime as a counterfactual, attempted to determine the difference, in cost / benefit terms, between the two regimes. However, in the event, there proved to be insufficient cost data to allow a meaningful quantitative comparison, nor was it possible to isolate the effects of Verification from other confounding factors. Therefore, a revised methodology was implemented and qualitative data was collected, by stakeholder interviews, and analysed to allow subjective comparison of the two regimes. From the analysis of the evidence collected, recommendations for improvement of the Verification process were identified for consideration by the HSE.

This report and the work it describes were funded by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Its contents, including any opinions and/or conclusions expressed, are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect HSE policy.

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Updated 2022-05-10