Norway: Safety body investigates gas leak at Melkøya

Credit - Harald Pettersen - Equinor - Hammerfest LNG plant at Melkøya

The Norwegian Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA) is investigating an LNG leak incident that happened this at Melkøya island, offshore Hammerfest in northern Norway.

According to PSA, this incident occurred while a road tanker was being filled with LNG at the Equinor facility at Melkøya around 14.00 on June 17.

During the operation, the tanker driver noticed LNG emerging from the vehicle’s safety valves. The filling was halted with the emergency switch, an evacuation alarm was sounded and personnel mustered, the PSA said.

“The emergency services followed the position closely, along with Equinor employees and other personnel involved. By 20.30, the leak rate had been reduced to a level where detectors in the area no longer showed readings,” the safety body added.

An investigation team from the PSA is due to begin work in Hammerfest this week. PSA will look to clarify the course of events, describing actual and potential consequences and identifying direct and underlying causes, in order to contribute to learning and experience transfer.

The LNG plant at the Melkøya is fed by gas from the Snøhvit field. The Snøhvit field is the first offshore development in the Barents Sea.

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