OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 37 Oil and Gas Wells

Section 762 Emergency escape route

Subsection 762(1)

A vertical ladder is the usual means of access to the principal working platform above the rig floor, known as the “monkey board”. In the event of a blowout, wellhead fire, or other emergency situation, the ladder may become blocked or otherwise rendered unusable. In such a case, an emergency means of escape, typically an escape line with a slide of adequate strength, must be installed and maintained so that persons can safely descend to ground level (see Figure 37.1). Every part of the emergency escape device must be inspected at least once every week that the rig is in operation. A record of every inspection should be maintained.

Figure 37.1 Example of emergency escape safety buggy

Subsection 762(2)

Unless otherwise required by the manufacturer’s specifications, the escape line should be securely fastened to the girt immediately above the monkey board. The line must be anchored to the ground at a distance specified in the manufacturer’s specifications or the specifications certified by a professional engineer. This distance should be the greater of 45 metres from the derrick base or a distance equal to the height of the derrick. Tension on the escape line should be such that a 100 kilogram worker sliding down it will touch the ground at least 6 metres from the anchor.

Ground anchors must be subjected to a static pull test of 13.3 kilonewtons when installed.

Subsection 762(3)

A safety buggy must be installed and maintained according to the manufacturer’s specifications and should be checked by a competent worker along with the escape line. The buggy must be kept at the principal working platform when not in use so that it is ready when needed.