Wednesday, 21 December 2016 18:27

SNP MSP CALLS FOR RENEWED FOCUS ON OIL AND GAS SAFETY

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PLEA FOLLOWS WORKER SURVEY SUGGESTING FALLING STANDARDS

SNP MSP for Aberdeenshire East, Gillian Martin, has called on the oil and gas sector to refocus its efforts on improving offshore health and safety – after a survey of more than 700 workers by Unite showed a majority felt safety standards had fallen in the last 6 months.



Over 58% of those surveyed said that standards had dropped, whilst only 3% reported an improvement. This has led to Gillian Martin, who worked for over 20 years in producing safety videos and e-learning for the industry, calling on the oil and gas sector to make the safety of its workers its highest priority and to ensure standards improve and that efficiency savings should not come at the cost of health and safety standards.

Commenting, Ms Martin said:

“The safety of our oil and gas workers has to be paramount, and it is concerning to see that workers feel the health and safety standards offshore have fallen in the last six months.

“We all know how dangerous offshore work is and the sector needs to ensure that the safety of its workers is the highest priority at all times – and with offshore health and safety reserved, the UK government really need to sit up and pay attention to these reports.

“The oil and gas sector has been taking steps to improve efficiency in light of global challenges – but this should never come at the expense of health and safety standards. We can’t afford to forget the lessons of the past when making these considerations.

“The call from Unite for a confidential helpline where workers can raise health and safety issues is welcome and should be considered by the industry. Workers need to feel the confidence to report issues when they see them as the consequences of not making improvements to health and safety offshore could be disastrous.

“I urge the oil and gas sector to listen to these calls, and take action where necessary.”

The Unite health and safety survey is reported here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-business-38384235

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