Walk to Work?

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For the past 2 years BP have been trial-ing what they call a 'Walk to Work' boat.

This was an old anchor handling boat, converted into a kind of accommodation vessel. The vessel sails up to a satellite platform, it puts a hydraulic gangway across that connects to a pin on the platform, then the maintenance crew (between 10 -26) can walk from the boat to the platform. It then sails away and comes back to pick the crew up at the end of the shift.

In its first year of operation out of 120 days of operation they managed to get to the platforms and get hooked up approximately 12 days. Apparently this was due to teething problems and bad weather, because it couldn't connect to the platform if there was a swell over 2-metres. During this last year or so they've had a bit more success with approximately 40-50 days.

Kitting this boat out and putting the pins on the platforms allegedly cost BP £40 million over the 2-years. They have now decommissioned that boat and are apparently looking at having a bigger boat built, but at what cost?

Two of the platforms they visit were manned until 10 years ago, when we were asked to rip everything out so they would be inhabitable. These two platforms could sleep up to 50-60 between them.

Since these platforms were de-manned, BP chose to have their satellite crews living in a hotel on the beach. For the past 18 months we have been staying at the Village Hotel in Hull at an alleged cost of £70-SO a night each. They have around 30-35 rooms booked up here, but we will be looking for more now since the boat was decommissioned.

All up you have to wonder about the thinking of shutting down installations and moving to this idea. Somebody somewhere is getting paid big bucks to come up with this madness and how much BP are losing on lost man hours due to no fly days, bad weather, hotels and everything else is anybody's guess!

Regards, D061876

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