Final rule requires oil rig safety management systems

October 21, 2010

All oil, gas and sulfur operations in the Outer Continental Shelf now will be required to develop and implement a safety and environment management system to help reduce the risk of accidents, injuries and spills.

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement published the final rule in the Oct. 15 Federal Register, nearly six months after the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion off the coast of Louisiana killed 11 workers and caused the largest man-made ecological disaster in U.S. history.

The rule, scheduled to go into effect Nov. 15, mandates the Washington-based American Petroleum Institute's "Recommended Practice 75, Development of a Safety and Environmental Management Program for Offshore Operations and Facilities."