Tjerk Raske
Country Manager
Drager México

Equipment to Improve Safety Track Record

Wed, 01/22/2014 - 10:32

The interconnectivity of devices plays a vital role in the development of Dräger’s portfolio of solutions to maximize the efficiency and productivity of its clients’ operations, while minimizing downtimes due to safety problems. “Our business model has shifted towards offering integrated solutions designed to better solve specific problems, such as hydrogen sulfide (H2S) leaks,” explains Tjerk Raske, Country Manager of Dräger Mexico. “PEMEX has contracted 40 integrated solutions from service providers managing their assets and using our solutions, including technical service training, to deal with the threat posed by gas in exploration activities. It is a fitting example of the type of commercial innovation we have achieved in the past two years.”

Raske is also eager to discuss Dräger’s fully integrated ‘plug and play’ telemetry solution for firefighting as a further example of the company’s wide range of fully integrated services. “Our customers do not have to worry about speaking with different suppliers when data connections do not work properly. Dräger supplies the customer with the package, installs it, and provides the training. The integrated panel provides the user with information on the breathing apparatus, such as time remaining, and also allows the operator to send evacuation alarms to users or to notify them when there is a man down. This type of data exchange works seamlessly. The reliability of its equipment sets Dräger apart from the competition in Mexican offshore safety market,” says Raske. “The oil in the Gulf of Mexico is very sour, which increases the risk of corrosion and the presence of hydrogen sulfide. Dräger equipment has shown to have considerably less problems with corrosion than alternative products, a factor that has been the key to our growth in Mexico.”

“We place a lot of value on being close to our customers to fully understand their specific problems and offer customized solutions. Looking at the bigger picture, if one compares the cost of additional investment in safety equipment against the risk of downtime, the choice for an oil and gas manager should be straightforward,” explains Raske. PEMEX’s level of investment in security and safetyrelated products and services has decreased in recent years, which Raske says has been reflected in the increase in accidents over the same period of time. “In terms of solutions that can be implemented, we are looking at introducing shelter facilities on platforms. When an H2S alarm occurs, PEMEX staff can access the equipment in these shelters. What we have installed in other parts of the world is a positive pressure environment that allows staff to operate. We have a great opportunity in Mexico to participate in these projects from the planning phase to ensure that aspects such as these are considered.”

Raske points out that four years ago PEMEX’s safety performance was superior to the international benchmark in terms of accident rates. “The international benchmark is 0.5 accidents per million man-hours and in 2010, PEMEX had a 0.42 accident rate. However, over the past couple of years, the accident rate has shown a steady increase. The rate increased from 0.54 in 2011 to 0.61 in 2012, while the statistics for 2013 show a rate of 0.81. It is important to note that the severity of the accidents has also increased. The Energy Reform will provide PEMEX with much needed capital to fill in cracks that are appearing, not only in safety and security, but also in other areas and activities, such as exploration, refining, and technology.”

Should PEMEX receive the correct levels of investment, Dräger is eager to offer an extensive range of solutions to enhance its safety and security performance. “We have a breathing filtering device called Parat that gives the user a 15 minute window to reach SCBA equipment, now considered as a benchmark in the industry but which is not always within easy reach. We are planning on introducing this device on the local market once we have convinced PEMEX of its utility. Our gas detection equipment, the Pac and X-am series, also stands out thanks to its long sensor life and integrated concept. A docking station called X-Dock checks the functionality of the equipment before use, and is able to download all the incidents registered during the day once the equipment is returned to the dock. Access to these kinds of statistics helps companies develop the right strategies to optimize safety and security in the workplace.”