Offshore Crane Safety: Navigating 30 CFR 250 Regulations

by | Jun 3, 2022 | Company News

The offshore industry is notoriously known for its high-risk operations that can pose devastating effects if the proper protocols are not in place, and with the rise of crane incidents in recent years, petroleum safety regulators have sounded the alarm. Here’s everything you need to know about the BSEE’s new safety regulations in regards to crane maintenance, operations, training and recordables. 


30 CFR 250 Crane Maintenance

On average per year,  there are about 42 oil and gas crane-related deaths due to unsafe crane operations with the most prominent occurring in Texas, Florida, New York, California and Illinois. These stark statistics have sparked the BSEE to put 30 CFR 250 into action—a move that has left many offshore companies scrambling for answers on how to reform. 


30 CFR 250.108 specifically regulates that all cranes manufactured after March 17, 2003, must be on a fixed platform and operated in accordance to the American Petroleum Institutes’ (API) recommended practice for operation and maintenance of offshore cranes, as described in API RP 2D


One of the biggest changes to the requirements is the shift from operating with an Automatic Overload Protection System (AOPS) to a Gross Overload Protection System (GOPS) in an effort to provide the operator with more protection without increasing the risk of dropping a load. Other amendments outlined in the revised safety initiatives include the need to conduct failure load assessments and maintain crane records onsite, as well as changes in capacity limits for structural fatigue, safe working loads, hook velocity and wire rope loads.


Crane Safety Training & Mentoring


Like many other industries, the pandemic brought on a plethora of challenges for the oil and gas workforce resulting in an increase in Short Service Employees. BSEE defines Short Service Employees (SSE) as any employee who has spent 6 months or less at a new job site or in a new role or industry. The influx of inexperienced personnel has led to a rise in oil and gas incidents, and quintessentially, the rollout of BSEE’s updated safety guidelines. 


The new regulations call for more comprehensive training and mentoring of petroleum operators and the heavily-populated SSE teams that drive them. Training should include but is not limited to, hazard identification, zone awareness and specific job hazard mitigation. When the slightest machinery error can pose detrimental outcomes, targeted curriculums like these recommended by the BSEE can better prepare your workers to handle whatever is thrown their way—even if it’s their first encounter. 


One of the most beneficial safety courses that aid in preparing new crew members are simulation models and replica platform-based crane training courses. The BSEE specifically recommends operators prepare new teams with this hands-on training method due to its ability to provide real-life hazard awareness that employees can experience first-hand beyond what pictures in a classroom can provide. 


Furthermore, the BSEE recommends offshore oil and gas employers establish a program or policy that trains and prepares experienced employees to become mentors for SSEs entering the workforce or work location. In addition, all SSEs should have some form of assessment after an appropriate time in their SSE period to evaluate and address any gaps in knowledge. 


Bridging the Gap with Safety Consultants


As cumbersome as these revisions may be, offshore oil and gas operators can embrace these new safety initiatives in a positive light. With increased HSE provisions come better accident ratio reports that help solidify potential partner contracts for future endeavors. 


At Pharma-Safe, we know how important safety is to your operations and the strategic partnerships you acquire. That’s why we offer a wide range of oil and gas safety services and personnel to help propel your business forward. 


Contact us today to schedule a consultation. Our experts are ready to assist your operations and answer any questions you have. 

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