Oil and gas industry

Oil and gas: Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) in polar climes

A tripartite meeting considered the special circumstances influencing OSH for the oil and gas industry in the northern hemispheres coldest regions.

Article | 29 January 2016
Representatives of workers, employers and governments met at the ILO to discuss OSH challenges unique to the work environment (such as those caused by low temperatures); health protection and access to medical care in remote and isolated areas; working time arrangements; OSH training to promote a preventative safety and health culture; and recruitment, retention and career development schemes.

Interviews with meeting delegates:

Employer Vice-Chair person Dr Jonathan O KEEFFE, Regional Medical Director for International SOS detailed some of the extra measures that working in these climates require.

Worker Vice-Chair person, Mr Leif SANDE of the Norwegian union Industri Energi (IE) outlined his belief that the tripartite process would be able to deliver important progress on OSH in polar and subarctic climate zones.

Government representative Mr Valery KORZH, Director, Department of Occupational Safety and Health for the Russian Federation stressed the importance of good staff selection and advanced training to better protect workers.

Chairperson of the Meeting, Mr Peter WOOLFORD expressed confidence that the meeting will make a meaningful contribution to improving OSH for workers in these regions.