Today’s benefits of sharing data for the sake of safety are numerous. Firstly, one can learn from past incidents to not make the same mistake twice. Secondly, one can pick up weak signals, i.e. near misses that occur regularly that might hint at a bigger underlying issue.
It is perhaps then obvious why many recognize that safety-related data is a good place to start when trying to agree on data sharing principles and models. However, agreeing on what safety-related data to share is not straightforward, as there are many concerns that need to be taken into consideration.
To help make progress in this area, O&G Data link has gathered a broad spectrum of industry players, including commercial actors and representatives from government and industry associations. The purpose is to identify opportunities for joint action to enhance safety practice and performance on the NCS. This initiative comes in addition to many others related to safety that are already underway within individual companies. As a principle matter, whatever the industry does collectively ought to be complementary to these. Joining forces to find effective ways to exchange and make use of best safety practices across companies is a natural starting point, benefiting all contributors on the NCS.
One area with potential is finding a collective solution for bringing relevant incident information to bear when engaging in industrial activity. To start with, such a solution could be developed based on publicly available data, addressing good ways to exchange, process, search and present relevant information. If it works and there is a clear path towards better overall safety performance, companies can more easily engage in the discussion on how to share proprietary data.
Dirk Hess, technology manager at Equinor and project lead for this effort, concludes that the initiative has the potential to demonstrate how the industry can come together for the benefit of all:
“Few in the oil and gas industry need convincing that high value can be extracted from data. Analysing and interpreting seismic data, for example, has been a bread-and-butter exercise for decades. It’s time to use digital tools collaboratively to unlock value from the industry’s safety data, helping us operate at the highest possible safety standards on the NCS and beyond.”