BP Launches New Safety Unit

Thursday, October 7, 2010 @ 08:10 AM gHale

In light of all the safety disasters at BP over the years, the oil industry giant is now creating a new safety division that will have sweeping powers to oversee and audit the company’s operations around the world.
The Safety & Operational Risk function will have authority to intervene in all aspects of BP’s technical activities.
It will have its own staff embedded in BP’s operating units, including exploration projects and refineries. It will be responsible for ensuring all operations work out to common standards, and for auditing compliance with those standards.
The company hopes the new organization will strengthen safety and risk management across the BP group. Mark Bly will head up the new unit and he will report directly to incoming chief executive Bob Dudley.
The company said the decision to establish the new function follows the Deepwater Horizon accident in the Gulf of Mexico and BP’s investigation into the disaster. It is one of a number of major changes unveiled by Dudley when he took over his new role October 1.
“This is a deeply challenging time for BP. The Macondo incident was a tragedy that claimed the lives of 11 people, caused injury to many others and had a widespread environmental impact,” Dudley said. “Our response to the incident needs to go beyond deepwater drilling. There are lessons for us relating to the way we operate, the way we organize our company and the way we manage risk.”
Dudley also said BP will re-structure its Upstream segment from a single business into three functional divisions – Exploration, Development and Production – and to carry out a detailed and wide-ranging review of how it manages third-party contractors.

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