Seven life ending incidents have occurred at Royal Dutch Shell plc (Shell) operations in 2019, which is an increase on previous years.
Involved in oil and gas exploration and production, Shell companies having operations in more than 70 countries.
Shell halved its CEO’s pay after fatalities and negative financial performance during the year. The oil giant has said that CEO Ben van Beurden was paid around £8.7 million in 2019, a 51% drop on the year before. Van Beurden’s pay includes a base salary of just under 1.6 million euros (£1.4 million).
In Nigeria, two contractors died when an oil and gas maintenance vessel they were travelling on capsized in bad weather.
A Shell employee died after falling from height into water while a vessel was moored at Shell’s Mormon Island facility in the USA.
A Shell employee based at Convent Refinery in the USA was fatally injured in a collision on the road when driving from the airport after his return from a business conference.
A Shell employee and a contractor died during a routine and mandatory test of the lifeboat launch and retrieval capabilities at the Auger tension-leg platform in the US Gulf of Mexico when the lifeboat disconnected from the lifting apparatus at height.
A roll-over incident occurred in Pakistan involving a road tanker which led to one contractor being fatally injured.
“Tragically, seven people died while working for Shell in 2019. This is unacceptable. We must strive to do more and continuously improve our efforts to keep people safe.” said Ben van Beurden, CEO, Royal Dutch Shell plc (Shell), in the Sustainability Report, 2019.
The Sustainability Report outlines Shell’s approach to sustainability and describes its social, safety and environmental performance in 2019.
“We investigate incidents and aim to learn from them, sharing findings to improve safety performance across our industry. All Shell employees and contractors must meet our safety standards and requirements, including complying with our 12 mandatory LifeSaving Rules. Since their launch in 2009, the rules have helped us make significant progress in preventing serious incidents, including many potential fatalities.”, company reports.
“In 2019, we continued to implement learnings from a tragic roll-over incident that occurred in Pakistan in 2017, involving a road tanker hired by a company that was providing road transport services to Shell Pakistan Limited. More than 200 people died after the spilled fuel ignited as they were collecting it from the incident site.” said the report.
Eye care for truckers in India
India has one of the worst traffic accidents records in the world, with someone dying on the road every four minutes, according to government figures. About a quarter of these accidents involve heavy commercial vehicles, such as trucks and buses.
“We take the health and safety of our employees very seriously, so all our drivers get their eyes checked regularly. However, we know this is not necessarily the case for other drivers.”, the company said.
Shell India and social partner VisionSpring are working together on a road safety initiative in India. The Drive Safe India Eye Camps campaign provided free eye tests and free prescription spectacles to truck drivers.
Shell companies aim to achieve no harm to people and no leaks across operations. Shell refer to this as Goal Zero ambition.
In 2019, it focused on three safety areas: improving how managers stop unsafe work in their teams, preventing objects being dropped from height – a common hazard in the industry – and marine safety.