Abstract

Human factors approach in oil and gas industry is still an emerging science compared to other industries, where most human factors publications focus their application in the design stage. However, human factors methods can be applied at any stage; contributing to bridging the gap between "work imagined" and "work done" concepts. This paper aims to provide an alternative approach in Service Company's complex activity for hazard identification and risk assessment.

A commonly utilized tool, Human Reliability Assessment (HRA), includes human factors in a risk assessment process, however, this method is time consuming and not easily adopted without extensive effort spent on training and operationalization. The approach proposed by the authors represents a simplified method focusing on key factors from Human Error Assessment & Reduction Technique (HEART), relevant to the nature of the Service Company's Operations. This is integrated into our existing qualitative risk assessment to recalculate the overall risk of a certain task. The process and the template for risk assessment is modified to include sections for human factors.

Ongoing field rollout tests show positive indications in regard to improved error capturing for error producing conditions during the task that'll be consolidated by end of Q1-2018 after field test completion. Modified risk assessment approach will reshape the standard risk assessment practices, moving the focus to and targeting the inherent unreliability of the task as a result of error producing conditions caused by unavoidable human interactions within complex systems. This method will include a matrix for measuring operators’ understanding of the potentially existing risk through a dedicated questionnaire. This matrix measures improvements in the overall understanding of risk involved from the front line employees’ prospective. Expected benefits also include further improvements for risk assessment training and competency by the company. The hypothesis is that by introducing key human performance factors to the risk assessment will help build awareness of human factors and their relationship to the probability of an existing risk. Utilizing an already effective system – risk assessment – to introduce human factors methods will help avoid the complexity associated with its implementation and still get the benefit of key elements of a well-established method.

This approach compares a standard risk assessment to one with integrated human factors. This comparison allows for assessing the gap between "work imagined" and "work done" practices, and for feedback from front-line employees as end-users of company procedures. This paper provides insights on how human factors can impact the level of risk and outlines the control measures targeted at such factors that can be missed if a standard risk assessment is applied.

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