Research facilitation and management for Newfoundland and Labrador's offshore industry

Development of a Human Error Safety Index for Offshore Platform Musters

Lead PI: Dr. Paul Amyotte
Subject Category: Health, Safety and the Environment

Start Date: Apr 2003
End Date: Apr 2005
Institution / Organization: Dalhousie University

The application of human factors analysis to loss prevention is generally acknowledged to be on the cutting edge of industrial safety research. In 2003, Dr. Paul Amyotte of Dalhousie University and Dr. Faisal Khan of Memorial collaborated in a Petroleum Research - sponsored project to develop a Human Error Probability Index (HEPI) for offshore emergency musters. The work has received strong endorsement from both Petro-Canada and Exxon-Mobil, and has resulted in a software tool to help decision makers in mitigating the risk of human error.

The initial focus of the work was on the prediction of human error probabilities during the process of emergency musters on offshore oil and gas platforms. An expert judgment technique was adopted as a vehicle to predict human error probabilities. Three muster scenarios of varying severity were studied in detail.  Through an innovative indexing procedure, the expert panel results were generalized to account for different muster initiating events and performance shaping factors. This enabled the development of software to calculate human error probabilities during the various stages of realistic offshore musters.

The HEPI software has now been developed, and can be used to mitigate human error consequences through changes in training, egress route design, safety devices and systems, and emergency procedures. In this manner, the bridge has been made between human errors and the underlying human factors that precipitate them.


  • Final Report [PDF]

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