03 Mar 2020

Safety: DPR begins collation of competent personnels in downstream operation

The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) yesterday announced the commencement of data collation of competent personnels operating in the downstream sector of the nations’ oil and gas industry.

DPR Director, Engr Sarki Auwalu, stated this at the launch of the Minimum Industry Safety Training for Downstream Operations (MISTDO) in Lagos yesterday.

Auwalu explained that MISTDO would help address the rampant cases of gas explosion, tanker fire incidents, road accidents and all other safety concerns related to downstream operations.

To this end, Auwalu said the legal department of DPR has commenced the collation of competent personnel across the downstream sector value chain as contained in the law, warning that any personnel whose job role contributes to any incident leading to loss of lives would be severely dealt with.

Going forward, he said MISTDO would help it track who to take to court or fine should there be any form of infraction in the downstream value chain.

This was even as he set September 21, 2020 as the deadline for all downstream operators in the nation’s oil and gas industry (MISTDO) compliant.

While giving the background to MISTDO, Sarki said in 2016, the Federal Government introduced a policy called safety clearance which provided the basis for MISTDO.

Auwalu said at the expiration of the deadline, it is expected that all personnel operating in the downstream sector would have gone through one form of training or the other in line with their job roles at any DPR approved training centre of their choice.

He said the training have been categorized into different modules and levels, depending on the category of workers.

The DPR boss said the agency would be leveraging on technology in the implementation of MISTDO which, he said would be online based using computers and android phones.

He explained that all that was needed was for trainee to log on to the MISTDO portal to carry out the training which he said would be interactive and available in other Nigerian languages to assist the literate and semi- educated workers to be certified.

The DPR lamented that 70 per cent of incidents in the oil and gas industry occur in the downstream sector, saying operators in the upstream sector are smaller in number and more safety complaint.

Auwalu assured that MISTDO will help to ascertain the actual number of people working in the downstream sector, skill set and competence in order to help save their own lives and that of others, alongside the investment of the company that he or she works for.

He empahsised that MISTDO would help curb quackery in the field of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), popularly called cooking gas as all uncertified personnel would be shown the way out of the system in order to save lives of Nigerians.

‘‘This initiative would help the regulator track every stakeholder in the LPG value chain because there would be no hiding place for anyone. It will interest you to know that we would be tracking personnel with their National Identification Number (NIN).

If you are in the LPG business, we must know who you are. Where you live, your office, the different certification exercise you have acquired and all other relevant information that will make you certified and work ready’’.

In designing MISTDO, the DPR helmsman said the agency interacted and got input from stakeholders, including members of the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN), Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) and the NSCDC.