Image courtesy of Royal Dutch Shell.

Royal Dutch Shell was served with a safety warning and prohibition notice from the UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Wednesday for a gas leak earlier this year at its Brent Bravo platform in the North Sea.

The gas release was noticed on June 9 and production was immediately shut down. Shell described the leak as “low level.” No injuries were reported.

In the prohibition notice the HSE said that “appropriate measures” were “not taken to prevent uncontrolled release of hydrocarbon gas from gas export system including the pig traps and crossover arrangements.”

Pig traps are used to ensure the flow of gas through pipelines and flowlines.

The HSE report noted that buildup in pig traps can make it difficult to blowdown and reduce pressure in an export terminal during an emergency.

“The team on the platform took immediate action to de-pressurize the line and to bring the situation under control. These and subsequent actions have addressed the issues raised in the notice, and the affected system has been returned to normal operational service,” a Shell spokeswoman said.

The HSE is still wrapping up its investigation and said it should reach its final conclusion soon.

Brent Bravo is located in Block 211/29 in the UK North Sea.


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