2017 Pioneering Technologies

Health, Safety And The Environment: Impact of Ocean Ranger Incident & Investigation

In February 1982, the semisubmersible MODU Ocean Ranger drilling off the coast of Newfoundland during a severe storm, capsized and sank resulting in the loss of all 84 crewmen. The OceanRanger was the largest and most advanced MODU at that time and its loss was of significant worldwide concern to governments, regulatory and certification agencies and most especially to the oil and gas industry. As a result, a Royal Canadian Commission was formed to investigate the incident. Two reports were issued in 1985. They had significant and immediate impact on the design of MODUs, as well as their regulation, classification and safety at sea. Other incidents had occurred before, but this investigation and recommendations centered collectively for the first time on Safety at Sea. It included the entire scope of marine technology, regulations, their enforcement and safety at sea. The methodology of the investigation served as a model for future incidents such as the Piper Alpha incident investigated by Lord Cullen in the North Sea and the Gulf of Mexico Macondo incident. The recommendations also had a significant influence on all offshore vessels and structures outside the offshore oil and gas industry.

Recognizing the pioneering efforts of the following individuals and organizations that
contributed to this technology:
Ewan Curlett, David Grenville, T.A. Hickman, Bevin Ledrew, Ralph Loomis
and Derek Muggeridge
Canadian Ocean Ranger Royal Commission