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Do you dare?

October 2011

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In this number:












and more...




PASS “GO”AND COLLECT SOMETHING PRICELESS From “every man for himself” to “all for one and one for all”. It may seem like a huge leap, but it is in fact a very logical process which, like any process, can be broken down into a number of steps. And one that is now well under way. Begun with an observation that raised eyebrows, it has gone on to become a fast-flowing river fed by numerous tributaries. The first landmarks on the journey to regulatory harmonisation are already well behind us.

“HSElife UNIO” is a concept which has taken on a life of its own within the industry. Why? Because it guides us towards the light at the end of the tunnel. Numerous companies have declared their willingness to join forces and, at last, to put their combined weight behind a challenging task that has been postponed for too long. And the contractors have proven more than willing to join them, providing advice and assistance. Something which seemed almost incomprehensible some years ago is now taking shape through consensus. If we all want the same thing, then the last thing we should do is think that each of us has to explain it in a different way.

Rocket science, www.fodderforyetanotherbloodymanagementbook.com or plain common sense?

On behalf of THE WAT GROUP

Pier van Spronsen




NAM Onshore VGWM Instruction

If you give added momentum to the key occasions when people need to be informed, their interest will

Piet van Dam

be sparked to absorb the information, even if it is not mandatory, but just extremely useful. >



Wide-ranging instruction NAM recently issued its Onshore HSE Instruction. It brings together a number of basic instructions relating to safety, health, welfare and the environment. It includes a variety of office and location-specific training modules and instructional videos for regular contractors. It also supersedes certain training courses and instructions, including the Deltalinqs port video. This had become extremely outdated, both in terms of information and the way in which it was presented. Because we believed a new version had been a long time coming, we have now also included topics such as access policy and NAMspecific dangers, in a much more wide-ranging instruction.

NAM Onshore VGWM Instruction


Context and connection

We aim to effectively inform anyone who is to work at a NAM onshore location and we have a lot to tell them. Of course, the question is how much information a person can absorb at the same time. It is important to set it within the right context and to present information in manageable chunks. This is why we opted for a layered, modular structure. The general section examines the primary process, the related risks and rules, procedures and instructions applied by NAM in order to manage the risks. Because no two installations are the same, the general section is later supplemented on-site with location-specific information. In a separate submenu, access is provided to additional documentation on specific operational issues or activities.

Interactive learning The instruction is compulsory for anyone wishing to work at an onshore location and culminates in a test. People who pass the test are issued with a stamp in their safety passport. The stamp is valid for two years. In this, we apply the structure of the Interactive Offshore Learning Programme (ILO) with regard to working at an offshore location. Both instructions, with the exception, of course, of the related questions, can be found on the website where all information developed as part of ‘A Way Of Living’ is published. This enables everyone to find information about specific subjects or activities, in addition to the compulsory instruction.




This instruction is a first step towards raising awareness of the various dangers at our locations. People will be able to acquire more knowledge by means of toolbox meetings, HSE meetings and additional training courses. Supervisors on location have a special responsibility during day-to-day activities. Where necessary, additional instructions must be issued to ensure that staff are aware of all dangers. More experienced staff play an important coaching role in this.

A new standard?

The ILO has now proved its worth and has been generally accepted by the industry as a standard, a step on the way towards harmonisation of the rules applied by the different companies. The Onshore HSE Instruction seems set to prove as successful as the other A Way Of Living materials. Many people from various quarters have already expressed interest in using it.

The Onshore HSE Instruction is available at www.awolinfo.com NAM Onshore VGWM Instruction

31 9

dialogue If you have to follow a procedure that tells you how to put one foot in front of the other for every step you take, does that make sense?

Or is it more likely to trip you up?








Ever since the horse was domesticated, every horseman has known how best to use it to get his cart moving in the right direction. The fact that this saying has stood the test of time is hardly surprising. Theory and practice can sometimes vary.


All or nothing? When you feel that things are not going badly in terms of HSE but still feel there could be room for professional development, what should you do? Immediately launch another campaign to ensure for certain that everyone is fully focused on these three magic letters? To announce it loud and clear? Or quietly hope that what is going well continues to do so and what is not going so well does not get any worse?

Listening to people The EU Division of Noble Drilling was determined to listen to its own people before even considering any campaign. “Let’s deploy an independent third party to take a thorough look at the organisation and identify exactly where we stand as a company, both offshore and onshore.� The actual assignment was twofold. Firstly, what level has the organisation (rigs and offices) reached on the so-called Hudson culture ladder? Secondly, what motivates people to depart from the rules and how is this dealt with in the ranks?


Step by step The WAT Group developed a step-by-step plan to obtain the information required. Before investigating the actual situation, it was necessary to gain a full understanding of the wide-ranging framework in which the existing HSE culture had been allowed to develop. In addition, what efforts had already been made in the past in order to increase employees’ understanding and awareness? All of this combined involved more than a quick look behind the scenes.

Two-part investigation For the first investigation, The WAT Group deployed a tool that has been and still is used successfully within the oil and gas industry. The structure was inspired by the ‘Hearts and Minds’ programme, as developed and used by Shell International. In order to be able to analyse behaviour in a professional environment, which was the aim of the second investigation, a number of complementary behavioural models from social psychology were combined. These were both useful and applicable because they are based on specific factors that influence people’s behaviour, as individuals and as members of a group. Finally, following an analysis of the results of both investigations, focused advice was issued on the areas for improvement identified to achieve a stable and generative company culture. The report was presented to the management team in May of this year…

Noble Drilling EU Division


What does this teach us?


The moral of the story is as simple as the golden rule of E&I: ‘the numbers tell the tale’. Basing one’s actions on assumptions rather than genuine statistics, on the Noble Drilling EU HSEQ report full.indd 1

5/27/11 10:58 AM

other hand, can and will have numerous unforeseen and undesirable consequences.




If you know how to approach people, they will happily discuss issues that generally remain beneath the surface. As the French say, it’s the tone that makes the music. The added value of intrinsically high-quality communication is clear to see. At office level, work planners become more active in the implementation process and foremen become involved in and the owners of processes of improvement.



Thanks to the open communication, there has been a significant improvement in understanding and acceptance of the rules

AN OPEN DISCUSSION Years ago, SMAT was introduced as a tool for supervisors and, to a lesser extent, in order to enable management to gain greater control on what is happening in the field. Over time, and quite unintentionally, it increasingly became a means of conducting short, mainly technical inspections at the locations. A year and a half ago, in alliance with ‘The WAT Group’, there was a reassessment and a new design developed, presented to the management and then rolled out. NAM Asset Groningen has now been using the revised technique for a year. Cor Postma, Safety Advisor, and Evry Schuiling, Operations Team Leader, Delfzijl and Pipelines, were closely involved from the outset. Since then, they have been true advocates of the idea behind this technique: holding open discussions on location.


THE NEW FRAMEWORK What we want to achieve is simple. We want to know how we can do things tomorrow more effectively and more safely than we did today. This involves more than simply assessing the situation and deciding if it is right or wrong; if you want genuine improvements, you need to look at the entire process. That can be harder than it seems. We aim to do it, after all, in close consultation with everyone involved in the process. The development of a system to attract supervisors to the locations is not difficult in itself. Ensuring they bring the right information with them from the field is another story altogether. It is noticeable that because people can actually determine the new framework for themselves, they are devising highly focused solutions. Thanks to the open communication, there has been a significant improvement in understanding and acceptance of the rules. People have also begun to pay more attention to the details. When you actively support this kind of initiative, you soon see that people will happily catch on and become proactive in their search for improvements. You also notice an increased awareness that it is also possible to sometimes say ‘no’. The same applies to the insurmountable problems that management occasionally encounters.

A DIFFERENT WAY OF DEALING WITH EACH OTHER People like to see the results of their efforts. But it is often not possible to provide a quick solution to issues that are raised. But that is not what is most important. It is about feedback, showing that you are listening, that you understand and that work is being done to find a solution for improvement. No one is claiming that SMAT* can result in spectacular changes overnight. After all, we are already working at a high level. These open discussions do, however, lead to new, strengthened commitment to take responsibility for things together. Interestingly, this increased commitment also makes people more interested in the hows and the whys. People are indeed speaking much more openly about everything relating to a safe, pleasant workplace. People are more positive, more approachable, and this has noticeably strengthened the team sentiment across the business, including NAM, contractors and subcontractors. And this new, different way of dealing with each other is exactly what we wanted to achieve.


A total support package is available at





INTENSIVE PROCESS For us, this means that we must, unconditionally, exert the discipline required to provide feedback and follow-up on what is put forward during the SMAT rounds. If we fail to do that, you can be sure that any future attempts will come to nothing. What’s more, it is often no longer the simple issues that we are aiming to improve. It is an enormously intensive process: assessing the situation, analysing, discussing, consulting and providing feedback, and more feedback, and even more. This of course is if your aim is to achieve quality. Quantity is not what we’re looking for. Even with an organisation like ours, it would be impossible to even deal with everything received from the field, let alone process it effectively.



Cor Postma

Evry Schuiling

SET POSITION, SET VALUE This intensive, quality-focused approach is worth the effort. We have noticed that people are generally open to the idea of making ‘a safe and pleasant workplace’ a reality. We speak to each other as professionals about the issues that matter. When we do a SMAT round at a location, I often hear the question: “Since you’re here, would it also be possible to…?” Or “I also wanted to ask: what is the situation with…?” And if, of their own accord, contractors start asking questions when we are doing a SMAT round, this means that we have successfully and appropriately forged a position for SMAT within the thinking and behaviour of our Asset. This year we will begin a new rollout of SMAT. So why the relaunch? We want to be certain that everyone is clear about the objective. We ultimately aim to achieve even more content, even more quality and even more impact.



sank a trial well from Rotterdam’s Maasvlakte port area into a gas field under a shipping

channel three kilometres off the coast. The results came back at

the beginning of September:

the field could go into production.


Communicate is is an active verb “We initiated this project back in 2008,” says Theo Bergers, Chief Operating Officer at ONE since April 2011. “But it took until February this year to convince everyone concerned about our ambitions and how we intended to approach the task in terms of professionalism, quality, safe working and so on. It took a host of studies, risk and contour analyses, reports and you name it to achieve that. Eventually, though, the Port of Rotterdam Authority agreed to do business with us. Fortunately, none of our neighbours objected to us setting up in the Maasvlakte area, we managed to secure all the necessary permits and approvals in time and we were able to insure the whole operation in the normal way. In terms of communication, we moved mountains during the run-up to the drilling trial and in anticipation of its successful outcome.”



“As a small player

people do look at you differently…



Boren naar


De onderzoeksfase Bij de zoektocht naar gasvoorraden is er sprake van twee fasen. Eerst is er seismisch onderzoek om te bepalen of er geschikte zandsteenlagen in de bodem aanwezig zijn. Dat onderzoekt men door trillingen in de grond te veroorzaken en de terugkaatsing vervolgens te meten. Als de metingen aangeven dat er een mogelijk gasveld is, begint de fase van het proefboren. Voor een proefboring worden enorme installaties gebouwd. Op zee (offshore) in de vorm van een booreiland en op het land (onshore) bouwt men een boortoren.

De voorbereiding Voordat een boortoren kan worden geplaatst, moet de boorlocatie worden gereedgemaakt. ONE huurt daarvoor specialisten in. Zij maken de grond egaal en vloeistofdicht, ze heien conductors, plaatsen waterbakken, storten beton en asfalteren het terrein. Pas dan komt het boorbedrijf de wel vijftig meter hoge boortoren opbouwen en komen er pompen, generatoren, office containers en silo’s met boorvloeistof op het terrein te staan. Boren is een continu proces: 24/7 is er ongeveer twintig man personeel in shifts aan het werk. Offshore wordt een compleet booreiland door sleepboten naar locatie gevaren. Op de juiste plek krikt het z’n poten naar beneden tot het stevig op de zeebodem staat en de golven het dek niet overspoelen. Omdat de mensen op het booreiland slapen, is er meer personeel aanwezig dan op een boorlocatie onshore.

Het feitelijke boren Om vervuiling van het grondwater te voorkomen, wordt tot een diepte van veertig meter een stalen buis, de conductor, de grond ingeheid. Vervolgens bouwt men om het bovenste deel van de conductor een betonnen putkelder met daarboven de boortoren. Aan een hijsinstallatie bovenin de boortoren wordt een topdrive gehangen, die de boorpijp aandrijft. De boorpijp bestaat uit meerdere, negen meter lange boorstangen met onderaan een beitel, de boorkop. Boort men dieper, dan worden er extra boorstangen aan de boorpijp geschroefd. Daarbij houdt men secties aan van zevenentwintig meter die telkens bestaan uit drie boorstangen. Als de boorkop vervangen moet worden, worden alle boorstangen uit het boorgat gehesen.


De boorstangen worden ook uit het boorgat gehesen bij het zetten van een casing. Een casing is een metalen buis met een iets kleinere diameter dan het boorgat. Het wordt aangebracht om de aangeboorde aardlagen permanent af te sluiten. Men bevestigt de casing door cement te spuiten in de ruimte tussen de casing en het boorgat. Na het zetten van de casing wordt verder geboord met een iets kleinere boorkop. Daardoor heeft de opvolgende sectie een kleinere diameter en ontstaat er een telescoopvormig gat. Bij een gemiddelde boring worden vier à vijf casings gezet.


Professional aura “ONE is a small player in the Dutch market. And small players are often viewed with a great deal of scepticism. In our case that was despite the fact that we do have strategic positions outside the Netherlands, on the UK continental shelf, in Africa and in South America. If you lack what they call a ‘professional aura’, then you are bound to come up against extra challenges whether you like it or not. You are forced to do your very best to be taken seriously. It is at times like these that the quality of the people you have on board really matters. Our Dutch operation has a workforce of thirty, every single one of whom can draw upon experience as broad as it is long, in this country and internationally. That always works in your favour, but in this case it proved absolutely essential in even being able to start the project.”

To be continued… “Tests have now shown that the trial well had the desired result. With an expected production capacity of 500,000 cubic metres per day and a total volume of approximately 1 billion cubic metres, this is a marginal field that counts as small by Dutch standards. We are about to start transforming the drilling site into a production location, which we expect to come online in the second quarter of 2013.”

Oranje-Nassau Energie Nederland B.V. focuses upon oil and gas exploration and production. As an investment company, until recently its principal activity was financing development and study projects. With its recent takeover of Canadian operator Cirrus Energy, however, it is now in a position to produce its own oil and gas in the Netherlands. Its Maasgeul 3 drilling operation is being conducted jointly with three partners: the Dutch state (through EBN), Taqa Energy and Energy-06. www.onebv.com


Centrica Production Netherlands regards regulatory harmonisation not as end in itself, but as an integral part of a coherent overall HSEQ policy. Ronald Pijtak, our HSEQ Manager, explains why.


No platitudes... “Our HSEQ policy is derived directly from our vision, mission and strategy as a business. We want to be a clear leader, not just in operations but also in performance. With that in mind, merely acknowledging the need to operate in an environment free of incidents and accidents is not enough. You have to turn the slogan “incident-free operations” into everyday reality. That is all a question of knowing, understanding and respecting roles and responsibilities, and of dealing with them in a professional fashion. Only once you have achieved that can you protect your assets – infrastructure and people – to the full, and so reach your objectives undisrupted. “To promote ideal working conditions, we deliberately use clear and uniform communications as part of an ongoing strategy developed some years ago. If you want to be at the cutting edge, platitudes are not enough. You must have the courage to link commercial, and sometimes moral, interests to the idea of “doing the right thing”. That means not just going all out to achieve the “hard” targets, but also – especially, even – pursuing the “soft” ones. We group these two aspects under the single heading of “care”. And key to that is transparency, by which we mean consistent interpretation of the rules, in the broadest sense of word, in any and every situation. It is that simple.”

“Care” is at the root of excellent business performance



Sietse Wijnstra, Managing Director of Cofely NAM Onshore Contracts in Assen, is also chairman of Casos, the Contractor Alliance for Safety on Shell Operations. This organisation provides a forum for about fifty contractors to make an active contribution to safety policy. When invited to represent Casos in the HSElife UNIO steering group, Wijnstra was only too happy to accept.

by step Strength in unity In recent weeks Casos has been informing its members about the WAT Group’s initiatives in the field of regulatory harmonisation. These have required little further explanation – the issues at stake are very familiar, after all, and Casos itself was established as a joint effort to produce consistent policy. It is important that that be shaped in partnership with the contractors, not only because they have considerable expertise but also because they run much of the risk. We all need to work together on this: onshore and offshore on the one hand, the NAM organisation on the other. At the moment our alliance includes only the major project and maintenance contractors, but we are all aiming for one and the same goal: formulating policy on an annual basis and designing programmes and campaigns for safe working. By combining our resources, we are able to make the most of our hands-on knowledge and expertise to create an accident-free workplace. And it’s an approach that works! Within a very short time, we have been able to tackle some twenty cases jointly with NAM.



“As contractors for the oil and gas industry, we are more than happy to contribute our expertise to help create a safe workplace based upon clear, practicable and unambiguous interpretation of the regulations.”

Open partnerships Looking beyond Shell, more and more other operators now seem to agree that they need to act collectively on this issue. Seven companies have already committed themselves to HSElife UNIO. We have been tracking developments in this field very closely, step by step. With that kind of unanimity on the other side of the table, the time has come for the contractors to enter the scene. We know that the companies have long realised that “the people doing the job know what’s safe and what isn’t”. A good example of this approach is the Onshore HSEW Instructions from NAM, developed in consultation with the Casos contractors. Both sides worked closely together in that process, forging an open partnership which enabled them to draw upon one another’s know-how – both theoretical and practical – and to respond to one another’s needs and wishes. The result is clearly “everybody’s baby”. What’s more, that is how it is viewed on the workfloor. Such openness is not a given, though; it is a very natural instinct to want to overcome your own problems and then keep the solutions to yourself. It takes time to learn that transparency is the right way to go, and it helps to be able to demonstrate successes proving that. On this front, contractors still have a tough game ahead of them. But the first twenty cases are an encouraging start.

New fervour


Joint policymaking of this kind is still a relatively new idea. And one totally at odds with the traditional notion of “thinking for other people”, then punishing mistakes and rewarding good behaviour. If the past has taught us anything, it is that that is no solution and never can be. By definition, it is too one-sided and overly focused upon the short term. What Casos already aspired to within the NAM-Shell environment is now being pursued with a new fervour throughout the industry thanks to HSElife UNIO.





Entering ‘the Black Swan’ I see a little poster hanging on the door: ‘Gerard Draaiersma. Folkmusic on harmonica’. I enter and am taken aback when I don’t see Jack sitting on his usual stool.The bartender nods in the direction of a secluded corner of the bar.

And there I see Jack. Playing a game of cards with two men. I order 4 pints of beer and walk up to their table. Jack does not notice me: “Ah, stop whining, just play!” he tells the lad sitting next to him. Skillful he holds his cards between the 3 fingers of his right hand.

I tap his shoulder and take a seat. He turns his head towards me. “Hey Jack” I call out. “Hey ye love. You come to see Jacky now aren’t you? Missed me?” I ask them whether they will attend the concert Saturday. They seem to have no clue what I am talking about. “Gerard Draaiersma, folkmusic on the harmonica” I explain. Jack roars: “Draaiersma! My doll, the man is dead as dead can be. The nitwit there ( he looks at the bartender) just forgot to remove the peace of paper.” The barkeepeer puts down our beers without blinking an eye and walks back. The men laugh. “Now that you mention the harmonica. It reminds me of that time that this hot shot came for a visit. “Jack” our P.I.C. says to me “work with respect for the regulations today because mister Whoever is visiting us to explain harmonization.” I shrugged my shoulders and told him;” Let him visit, with his harmonica. I just do my work.” Boy, was everybody stressed out that day. Following rules, working according protocol. We had quite a laugh when Round Robbie ....

... Can you imagine what happend? Have a wild guess and win! Or something that went so structurely wrong that people don’t remember anymore how it should be.

The best reply is €500 worth! Send your reaction to info@thewatgroup.com


Anyway, I went for lunch and guess what? Mister Whoever comes to sit with me. Me, of all people. Asking me whether I thought it necessary that the same language is spoken, the same rules are being followed. I told him that I thought we were just doing fine. Sure, sometimes something happens, but that’s just part of the job. Regulations... If something goes wrong you are not going to read a protocol. You run like a madman to save your bud. In reply he says: “But mister Drost, surely you and your wife have rules and agreements at home, just to keep it in harmony.” That man obviously didn’t have a clue how things work. I said: “Sir, in my home there is one rule. This rules says: it’s Jacks way or the highway. This is how I keep it in harmony.” You should have seen the look on his face. He even asked me whether my wife approved of this rule. “Honestly sir, I have never asked. Gets ye nothing but trouble.” He said he wanted to see me again. But I never saw the man back. Of course shortly after that I had that thing with me hand you know...

Jack caughs and wipes of his mouth with the back of his hand. He stares and mumbles: “With his harmonica-model.”

Jack Drost aka N.B.


When talking about the same thing, wouldn’t it Representatives from various parts of the oil and gas industry held a meeting in early September. The meeting had been called to discuss the common desire to eradicate a persistent Babylonian confusion of tongues, something that should have been resolved long ago. Those at the meeting concluded that a solution was nearer at hand than they had ever imagined. What were they talking about?


Harmonisation involves bringing everyone together as closely as possible, without encroaching on their individual identities and cultures.


t be better if we all used the same language?

a joint effort Every man for himself Oil and gas companies justify their existence by finding and producing oil and gas. When doing so, they all use virtually the same methods. By the same token, the market sells the requisite technology to almost anyone who wants it. One area where the companies differ from one another is the way in which processes are organised and facilitated. For instance, each organisation has its own rules, standards, procedures, guidelines, instructions, and so on.

Avoid adverse situations It is worthwhile asking whether these differences are based on well-founded considerations. Yet this is hardly a new question. This has been a bone of contention within the industry for many years, particularly for contractors who regularly switch from one operator to another. Result: confusion. This in turn gives rise to doubt, confusion, and misunderstanding. These are all too often translated into irritation, lost time, extra costs, hazardous situations, incidents, and – in the worst possible case – disasters. In short, a bunch of adverse outcomes that we can really do without, both in operations and elsewhere.



Where there’s a will there’s a way We’ve always believed that there has to be a better way of doing things. Years of hard work in this area have delivered precious few concrete results. What has always been missing was a driving and guiding force. Eighteen months ago, The WAT Group decided to tackle this challenge. Given its years of experience in the area of internal communications, while working for a range of different operators, achieving a consensus seemed to be on the cards. Indeed, the notion of sharing with one another caught on, and quickly materialised into making information available that had previously been classified as a “trade secret”. As Bram van de Leemput puts it, elsewhere in this magazine: We are not secretive about our rules, nor about how we continually evaluate them together with our contractors. Our information is accessible to all, as we see transparency as a major asset. By adopting this approach we aim to continually stimulate discussion.”

The first step Based on this idea, NAM subsequently shared a great deal of specific HSE-related information with other operators (who then shared it with one another) via the public website of “A Way of Living” (www.awolinfo. com). Rather unsurprisingly, when this was tested against internal rules, it was often found to have more similarities than differences. Such differences as there were could frequently be disregarded as “factually irrelevant”. That represented an important first step towards harmonisation. Many more such steps were to follow.

Fully fledged communication centre The WAT Group has now developed a system to bring together similar and related initiatives. The project was christened HSElife UNIO.. The concept of industry-wide harmonisation in the field of HSE regulations was refined in a communications centre based on cloud computing. This has a public section, containing information that is common to the respective companies. Here, too, are a growing number of documents and tools which go beyond basic harmonisation. In addition, the centre maintains separate and secure areas for each individual company. These contain information that is still, or must remain, “company specific”. This same structure allows a maximum amount of space for a corporate identity and culture, and for matters that may still require harmonisation.

Information wall-mounted RACK A4 brochures for supervisors

A6 brochures for the workfloor

Onscreen presentation slides DVD/video for uniformed presentation



By the industry, for the industry HSElife UNIO is committed to continuous development. Indeed, its very structure “propels” the system towards further optimisation and expansion, through the sharing of information and know-how, not just between the companies themselves, but also with their contractors. Crucial decisions are taken by a steering committee made up of representatives from both sides. Steering committee members are “the voice of the company or organisation that they represent within HSElife UNIO”. At the same time, they are “the voice of HSElife UNIO” within their respective companies or organisations, and in their dealings with the various working groups tackling the issue in question.

The advantages of a tailored centre over a tailor-made tool are obvious.

The golden goose The framework for an effective, well supported, and fully fledged HSE communications centre is as solid as a rock. Provision has been made for the centre’s further development, to ensure that it remains a flexible, universal, and future-proof information resource. The same goes for the support that HSElife UNIO’s developers can be expected to provide in the areas of implementation, integration, and advice. At the time of writing, 7 parties have given the go-ahead for the implementation of HSElife UNIO as a fully-fledged tool in their business or organisation. Who’s next?

The following parties have committed themselves to HSElife UNIO and are represented on the steering committee:

CASOS • NAM/SHELL • Centrica • TAQA Posters


TOTAL • Oranje Nassau Energie

Want to join the harmonisation bandwagon? Click here for an introduction to HSElife UNIO or contact Pier van Spronsen for a detailed presentation.ie.





I had been worrying for quite a while about the frequency with which I was using my iPhone. To e-mail, or at least to check if there were any new messages, to tweet, or at least to see what my Twitter friends were up to, checking Facebook for the latest minute-by-minute updates from these friends, plus Hyves, Linkedin, Teletext, NU news, Voetbal International; the list goes on…


Collectively captured


Monkey Mind

This was until, just over six months ago, I became sick to death of

Carr bought his first Apple Computer in 1986. He was

continuously interrupting my concentration to reach, yet again, for

immediately obsessed. Later, when the internet appeared,

the telephone. Yet again, allowing myself to be seduced for the

he spent hours on end surfing. That was until he started

umpteenth time, or even worse, simply going on autopilot in search

to have concentration problems. “I must be too busy and

of information and messages. After that point, I started to wonder

getting older”, was his initial diagnosis. But, a little later,

about my friends and acquaintances who still seemed obsessed by

he had a realisation. He understood clearly how his brain

the flow of information from their beloved smartphones. “Am I just

was adapting to the new way of thinking: it had become

old-fashioned or are we being collectively taken over by technology?”,

fragmented! Jumping from one website to the next, zapping

I thought doubtfully.

from one app to another. The patterns of the brain become ingrained: “If you do something repeatedly, it is difficult to

This was until a report appeared in the Volkskrant newspaper on 5

stop”, says Carr. He had discovered the ‘Monkey Mind’ and

March of this year. My colleague Raoul Destrée showed me an

missed the linear way of thinking! Linear thinking works

interview with Nicholas Carr. Its theme was: “The shallows: what the

reflectively and takes you beyond normal thinking. It takes

internet is doing to our brains.” This is also the title of his new book.

you deeper and enables you to learn to see things differently.

Carr aptly described precisely what I had been experiencing at that time: I was missing my old brain!

Of course, the internet is a wonderful medium. It is democratic and allows us to say (almost) exactly what we


think. The internet also connects us in a way that was not

Glimpse of eternity

even possible until very recently. Take Skype, for example. But Carr also warns us of a form of collective ADHD. People

In Scheveningen, I do not live far from the beautiful old Kurhaus.

are driven by trends and fashions: it is imperative to be

A real eyecatcher with authentic character and radiance, hidden

online 24/7 and to respond to e-mails at least daily. Today is

amongst all the new buildings. What would Scheveningen be

hot, but tomorrow is not.

without this stately building? If I allow the details of the building and its finish to really work on me, I begin to enter some kind of ‘intuitive time’ that operates independently of the hands on the clock. It is a time that goes deeper and transcends trends and fashion. Compared to all the modern buildings that surround it and that all look the same, this building radiates a kind of purity. Whereas the Kurhaus has beautifully shaped chimneys and towers, the modern buildings are generally finished with straight lines. It is worth noting that the Kurhaus has been standing since 1885, is as beautiful as it ever was and still the absolute highlight of Scheveningen. Yet I recently read in the local newspaper that there are plans to demolish the surrounding new buildings yet again. They have been there for perhaps thirty years. Surely this also reflects some kind of fragmented thinking and undue haste? Is this something that is reflected in all aspects of life? Hardly has the iPhone 4 been released, and the arrival of the iPhone 5 is announced. The iPad2 came hot on the heels of the first.

In today’s world, it is gradually becoming an art to capture a glimpse of eternity amongst all these short-lived changes. I would certainly love to find out how you manage to do it!?


To stow or to chew?

l e e f t ’ n o D t s u j , e blu ! w e ch

Maintaining your weight and feeling good after dinner without having to do something? Just activate your jaws! What happens when we chew? More than you can imagine. In your mouth food is being brought to the right temperature whilst chewing. Exactly the temperature your body needs to digest the food. Also your food is being scanned in your mouth so your body already knows: “Ah, this substance goes to that organ, and this substance goes to that intestine.” When you hardly chew, you give your digestive system loads of work. Stress will develop. Suddenly the system must

regulate the temperature (adding warmth to a mouthful of ice-cream and cool off a mouthful of fried cheese) and figure out what substance need to go where. The consequence is feeling bloated after dinner. If you chew your food you already crush the food, bring it to the right temperature and give your body the time to figure out where to transport the different substances. By chewing you avoid stress for your intestines allowing them to do what they do best, keep you healthy and in shape. Another advantage is that you are more aware of the fact that you had enough. You eat less fast when you chew. Choosing to chew might be a bit awkward in the beginning, but it’s like the old saying: “Don’t bite off more than you can chew.” A simple, but lovely and nutritious soup that doesn’t need to be chewed at all!

For approximately 15 persons: 10 large potatoes 10 tablespoonfuls of olive oil fresh basil (10 leaves or so)

4 liters of stock 1200 gr. pealed tomatoes Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper

1) Peel the potatoes and cut them in cubes. 2) put the potatoes in a pan with the oil, basil, the stock and the peeled tomatoes (and their juice). 3) Bring to boil. Cover and gently simmer for 45 minutes. Stir from time to time. 4) Blend it! 5) Serve with Parmesan cheese, pepper and salt.


for industry, by industry HSE LIFE is a forum for those working in the petroleum and natural gas industry. HSE LIFE focuses particularly on those working wherever HSEW is really an issue or really should be an issue: on the shop floor.

HSE LIFE magazine is published by: The WAT Group B.V. P.O. Box 20033 7302 HA Apeldoorn The Netherlands Mobile: +31 (6) 462 95 25 6(7, 8, 9) www.thewatgroup.com On this issue worked René Beaumont, Natascha Bruti, Marjou Janse, Marcel van Spronsen, Veselin Raznatovic, Ramon Roelofs, Pier van Spronsen, Stéphanie van Stockum, Janine IJssel de Schepper

Please e-mail any comments about subjects discussed in this magazine to info@thewatgroup.com attn. Janine Ijssel de Schepper.

Articles may not be taken from this publication within the meaning of Article 15 of the Netherlands Copyright Act.; © The WAT Group B.V. 2011

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HSE Life October 2011 UK  

Health, safety and environment magazine for Gas & Oil Industry

HSE Life October 2011 UK  

Health, safety and environment magazine for Gas & Oil Industry