The G+ work programme is agreed and steered through quarterly Board and monthly Focal Group meetings. The collation of incident data provides an evidence basis for influencing the content of the work programme.

The G+ has created a series of brochures to explain our work further. The “right stuff” brochure documents the overall work programme of the G+. The “right data” explains the incident reporting procedure. The “right guidance” details the good practice documents that the G+ creates. The “right design” contains information on the G+ Safe by Design workshops.

Workstreams

G+ BG - Good practice guidelines

Good practice guidelines

Good Practice Guidelines are a core part of the G+ work programme and can be found here.

G+ BG - Health and safety statistics

Health and safety statistics

The annual health and safety incident report is available here, as well as the ability to interrogate the G+ data through Power BI.

G+ BG - Safe by design workshops

Safe by Design workshops

The G+ regularly holds Safe by Design workshops. Further information on the initiative, including previous workshop reports can be found here.

Research

The G+ has worked with several universities on offshore wind health and safety.

The University of Portsmouth was contracted to provide a detailed ergonomics assessment, identifying the key risks to technicians (short- and long-term), associated with ladder climbing in the offshore wind industry.

The report provides the outcomes from a review and analysis of existing literature on ladder climbing and the effects of this activity on the human body (short- and long-term) as well as the review of existing design and operational standards for ladders used in the offshore wind industry. It identifies the key risks to technicians (long term and short term) and includes the results from an ergonomic assessment of ladder climbing and provides recommendations. The report also provides recommendations for future work and research.

The G+ assisted a group of REMS students on the topic of human free lifting. Renewable Energy Marine Structures (REMS) is an EPSRC-funded Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT). It is a collaboration between Cranfield, Oxford and Strathclyde Universities.

The aim of the work was to conduct research into and assess the feasibility of methods and technologies that could reduce the need for personnel in the vicinity of lifting operations during installation of offshore wind turbines. They employed a Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis method combined with a review of existing technological solutions and recommendations for new ones, and a cross industry survey, which allowed the capturing of real information of the views of operators and practitioners with respect to the criteria importance when it comes to the benchmarking of concepts. The paper was awarded best paper at WindEurope2018.

One of the G+ members, Ørsted, has employed an industrial PhD student to investigate the physical requirements in offshore wind. Part 1 is to undertake a survey to investigate associations between self-reported physical exposure, musculoskeletal complaints and physical fitness among technicians in Ørsted. Part 2 is to measure the physical capacity of technicians with a health check including VO2 max and muscle strength of the shoulder, neck, lower back and forearm and to observe the physical exposure of with accelerometery and heartrate monitoring. Part 3 is to design and test the feasibility of a 12-week on-site training, aimed at improving physical capacity. The results are due to be made available at the end of 2020.

Offshore wind transfer procedure

Early in 2015 the UK Health & Safety Executive (HSE) wrote to offshore wind industry stakeholders clarifying their position on the transfer of personnel from crew transfer vessels to offshore fixed assets in wind farms, with regards to the UK Work at Height Regulations 2005. The HSE’s expectation to achieve legal compliance is that a person is attached to a suitable fall arrest system prior to transferring on to the ladder and will when descending remain attached until transferred back onto the vessel.

The G+ Global Offshore Wind Health & Safety Organisation (G+) responded to this letter stating support for this method of transferring personnel, and where member sites are not currently adopting this approach that they would work collectively to support a transition to this arrangement and will also notify the wider industry of this intention.

In 2018, the G+ has reviewed the response previously provided on transfer procedures. The G+, or G9 as it was formerly known, historically focussed on the UK and Northern Europe, hence the reference in the letter. The G+ now has a strong drive to be global and would like to make clear that the procedures apply at all member sites across the globe.

Following consultation responses received during the review of the G+ Working at Height good practice document it is also worth clarifying that ensuring permanent attachment to the fall arrest system during transfer operations applies for all transfers i.e. from a floating vessel to a fixed structure and the other way around.