Dropped objects are often the principal cause of accidents in the oil and gas industry and contribute significantly to the total risk level for offshore and onshore facilities. In this paper, the risk-based approach for assessing pipeline protection against accidental external loads is briefly introduced. Secondly, a limit state function based on the impact energy absorbed is proposed to calculate the probability of failure (Pf). Thus, the formulas to perform the reliability sensitivity analysis can be developed based on this function. Further, the Monte Carlo (MC) method is applied to the reliability sensitivity analysis, in which the mass (M), collision area (A), the volume (V), added mass coefficient (Ca) and drag coefficient (Cd) of the objects are assumed to follow a certain distribution, and how each of them may affect the probability of failure will be investigated.

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