Affiliations: [a] School of Health and Human Performance, Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada | [b] Encana Corporation, Halifax, NS, Canada | [c] Survival Systems Training Limited, Dartmouth, NS, Canada
Corresponding author: Michael J. Taber, 37 Nicholas Drive, St. Catharines, ON, L2S 4C5, Canada. Tel.: +1 905 401 7421; E-mail: [email protected]
Abstract: A primary objective of this study was to determine if the 15 minutes of air contained in an emergency breathing apparatus afforded sufficient time to carry out an evacuation from an offshore installation in the event of an uncontrolled hydrogen sulfide (H2S) release. Twenty-four male and 12 female volunteers performed relevant evacuation skills during a simulated evacuation into a 36-person lifeboat. An observational analysis and subjective ratings of difficulty were used to determine potential ergonomic and safety issues. Results indicate that even under the worst-case scenario, all personnel would be able to safely evacuate to the lifeboat and abandon the installation given similar conditions used during this study. It was noted however, that ergonomic improvements to the design of the personal protective and safety equipment could improve usability, thus decrease abandonment times.