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The oil industry should pay more attention to human and organizational aspects in order to fundamentally improve safety. The industry does not learn enough from oil spills because learning is a conflict of interests: "Parties try to protect or promote their interest and try – consciously or subconsciously – to exclude each other from the learning process." This conclusion is the result of an investigation into the aftermath of the major oil spill caused by the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig disaster in 2010 conducted by Bruno Verweijen, who will be awarded his Ph.D. by Radboud University on 27 September.
On 20 April 2010, the drilling rig Deepwater Horizon lost control of the Macondo well in the Gulf of Mexico. The resulting explosion killed eleven people and resulted in the largest offshore oil spill in world history. The spill had a disastrous effect on ecosystems, local communities and businesses.
Researcher - Bruno - Verweijen - Macondo - Spill
Researcher Bruno Verweijen compared the Macondo spill with other offshore drilling incidents and discovered that the errors contributing to the Macondo calamity occur more often in this industry. Some even contributed to various other large oil spills and near misses (incidents where a disaster almost occurred).
"The Macondo spill caused a crisis in worldwide offshore drilling and not just for BP, Transocean and Halliburton, the companies directly involved. Even in Europe, interested parties saw the need to review risk management practices." Verweijen studied how these parties in the North Sea region learned from the spill. He analysed publicly available documents and interviewed 43 safety professionals working for various interested parties in the European oil industry...
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