Executive Order on Cooperation on Health and Safety in connection with Offshore Oil and Gas Operations etc.

Executive Order no. 1201 of 23. oktober 2015 issued by the Danish Working Environment Authortity - unofficial version.

The following shall be laid down pursuant to sections 49 and 72(1) of the Offshore Safety Act, cf. Consolidated Act no. 831 of 1 July 2015, and with authorisation pursuant to section 3(1) of Executive Order no. 1193 of 9 October 2015 on the Tasks and Powers of the Danish Working Environment Authority under the Offshore Safety Act:

Part 1 Scope and Objective etc.

1.-(1)This Executive Order shall apply to offshore oil and gas operations as defined in section 3(1), no. 16 of the Offshore Safety Act.

(2) This Executive Order shall also apply to operations in connection with an installation or connected infrastructure, cf. section 3(1), no. 1 and 29 of the Offshore Safety Act, if the operations are covered by the Act on the Use of the Danish Subsoil and if the operations carry health and safety risks.

(3) This Executive Order covers cooperation on health and safety for all employers and employees in connection with offshore oil and gas operations.

2.-(1) Health and safety activities shall be carried out through cooperation between the operator and the owner, respectively, other employers, supervisors and other employees.

(2) Cooperation on health and safety shall be in place by no later than 4 weeks after the installation has been taken into use.

(3) For mobile installations as defined in section 3(1), no. 14 of the Offshore Safety Act, which organise cooperation on health and safety at the installation in other appropriate, operational ways, the provisions in sections 4-36 may be derogated from in so far as is commensurate with Directive 89/391/EEC on the introduction of measures to encourage improvements on health and safety of workers at work.

(4) For employees performing inspections of non-permanently manned installations, cooperation on health and safety shall be managed by the safety organisation in place at the permanently manned installation to which the non-permanently manned installation is connected.

3. For the purposes of this Executive Order:

  1. "Work area" shall mean: The area of an installation or connected infrastructure to which a safety group is connected and for which it carries out its tasks.
  2. "Safety organisation" shall mean: Organised cooperation of the operator and owner, respectively, on health and safety for all employers and employees in connection with offshore oil and gas operations.

Part 2 Operators and owners without a safety organisation

4.-(1) Where the operator and the owner, respectively, are employers of 1-9 employees working at one or several installation(s), there is no requirement to establish a safety organisation at the installation of the operator or owner.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that cooperation on health and safety in connection with offshore oil and gas operations can take place. Cooperation shall take place through ongoing direct contact and dialogue between the operator and the owner, respectively, other employers, possible supervisors and other employees.

5.-(1) Each year, the operator and the owner, respectively, of installations without a safety organisation shall, in collaboration with employees and possible supervisors at these installations, conduct discussions concerning health and safety, in which the participants shall:

  1. organise the content of cooperation on health and safety for the forthcoming year,
  2. establish how cooperation will take place,
  3. assess whether the previous year's goals have been reached,
  4. establish goals for cooperation for the forthcoming year, and
  5. discuss whether the necessary health and safety expertise is present at the installation.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall be able to document in writing to the Danish Working Environment Authority that the annual health and safety discussions have taken place.

6.-(1) Operators and owners, respectively, of an installation without a safety organisation shall ensure that employees working at the installation receive all necessary health and safety information, and shall ensure that employees are given the opportunity to present recommendations regarding health and safety at the installation.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that employees are involved in the planning and introduction of new technology, including health and safety consequences when selecting equipment, personal protective equipment, etc.

Part 3  Operators and owners, respectively, with a safety organisation

Establishing a safety organisation

7. Where the operator and the owner, respectively, are employers of 10 or more employees working at one or several installation(s), cooperation on health and safety at the installation of the operator and owner, respectively, shall be organised with a safety organisation.

The safety organisation at installations

8. At installations with 5 or more employees, operators and owners, respectively, covered by section 7 shall establish the following

  1. one or more safety groups and
  2. a safety committee.

9.-(1) At installations with 1-4 employees, cooperation on health and safety shall take place through regular direct contact and dialogue between the operator and owner, respectively, possible supervisors and other employees.

(2) Installations covered by subsection 1 shall be part of a joint safety committee together with another installation operated by the same enterprise.

10.-(1) A safety group for a work area shall comprise of 1 appointed supervisor and 1 elected safety representative.

(2) In connection with establishing a safety group, the operator and the owner, respectively, shall in collaboration with employees and supervisors, cf. section 13, decide within which area of the installation the safety group is to carry out its tasks. The work areas of the safety group shall together cover all employees at the installation of the enterprise.

(3) The number of safety groups in a safety organisation shall be stipulated pursuant to section 13.

(4) If the supervisor and safety representative of a safety group are not present at the same time, the member present shall carry out the safety group's tasks. The absent person shall as quickly as possible be notified of measures taken during his/her absence.

11.-(1) A safety committee is composed of supervisors and safety representatives from one or more safety group(s), with the operator and owner, respectively, or their representative as the chairman. The chairman shall be able to act on health and safety related matters on behalf of the operator and owner, respectively.

(2) If there is/are 1 or 2 safety group(s) at the installation, the safety committee shall be composed of, besides the chairman, the members of the safety group(s). If there are more than 2 safety groups, the safety representatives shall elect a number of members from among themselves and the employer shall appoint a number of members from among the supervisors to the safety committee, cf. section 13.

(3) Members of the safety committee are elected for a period of 2 years.

(4) Substitutes for members of the safety committee shall be elected pursuant to the same regulations as election of members of the safety committee.

(5). If a supervisor or safety representative stops as a member of the safety group, the person in question shall also stop as a member of the safety committee.

(6) If an agreement has been established pursuant to section 23(5) on an election period of more than 2 years for safety representatives, this election period is shall also be applicable to members of the safety committee.

12.-(1) Each year, operators and owners, respectively, of installations with a safety organisation shall in collaboration with employees and any supervisors at these installations, conduct discussions concerning health and safety, in which the participants shall

  1. organise the content of cooperation on health and safety for the forthcoming year, 
  2.  establish how cooperation will take place, 
  3.  assess whether the previous year's goals have been reached, 
  4.  establish goals for cooperation for the forthcoming year, and 
  5.  discuss whether the necessary health and safety expertise is present at the installation.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall be able to document in writing to the Danish Working Environment Authority that the annual health and safety discussions have taken place.
Size of the safety organisation

13.-(1) The operator and the owner, respectively, in collaboration with the employees and supervisors shall stipulate the necessary number of safety groups and members of the safety committees based on a subsidiarity principle.

(2) The number of safety groups and members of the safety committee at the individual installation shall be determined so that safety groups and safety committees can at all times carry out their tasks in a satisfactory manner in relation to

  1. the management structure at the installation, 
  2. additional structures, including layout and size, at the installation, 
  3. the health and safety conditions at the installation, including type of work, hazards, risks and positive working environment factors, 
  4. the organisation of work, including use of shift work, cf. 24 (4), 
  5. special types of employment and 
  6.  other considerations that affect the tasks of the safety organisation regarding health and safety.

(3) Furthermore, the number of safety representatives shall be stipulated such that all employees can contact their safety representatives, and such that employees can discuss matters related to health and safety with members of the safety organisation during the employees' working hours.

(4) There shall be at least the same number of safety representatives as supervisors in the safety organisation.

Tasks of the safety committee

14.-(1) The strategic, i.e. overall tasks, shall be managed by the safety committee.
(2) These tasks include:

  1. Planning, managing and coordinating cooperation on health and safety at the installation. The safety committee shall manage the necessary activities for the protection of employees and the prevention of risks, 
  2. conducting the meetings mentioned in section 36(3), 
  3. assisting with health and safety activities, and ensuring that safety groups are informed and instructed about this,
  4. participating in the preparation of the installation's health and safety document, including absenteeism due to sickness, in accordance with existing principles of prevention, cf. Executive Order on Management of Safety and Health in connection with Offshore Oil and Gas Operations, etc., 
  5. participating in determining the size of the safety organisation, cf. section 13, 
  6.  advising the operator and the owner, respectively, of solutions to health and safety matters, and on how to integrate the working environment into the strategic management and daily operation of the installation, 
  7. ensuring that the causes of accidents, poisoning and injury to health as well as imminent risks of such incidents are investigated, and ensuring the implementation of measures to prevent any recurrence. Each year the safety committee shall compile a report on accidents, poisoning and injury to health at the installation, 
  8. keeping itself informed about legislation on the protection of employees from health and safety risks,
  9. defining principles for adequate and necessary training and instruction adapted to the working conditions at the installation and the needs of employees, as well as ensuring ongoing supervision of compliance with these instructions, 
  10.  ensuring the preparation of a chart of the structure of the safety organisation, including information about members and ensuring that employees are familiar with the chart and 
  11.  actively contributing to the coordination of health and safety work with other enterprises carrying out work at the installation.

(3) The safety committee shall be consulted before any enquiry to the specialist expert if it concerns assistance in planning or resolving health and safety issues in connection with general, planning, future or collaborative tasks.

(4) When the safety committee advises the operator and the owner, respectively, and they fail to follow the advice, the safety committee is entitled to receive a reason. As far as possible, the reason shall be given before the work in question is performed, but within 3 weeks at the latest. The same shall apply when the committee provides multiple recommendations on a case.

15. The safety committee shall hold extraordinary meetings when serious accidents, serious poisoning or other injury to health occur or when serious incidents that might have caused accidents or injury to health occur, as well as when otherwise necessary. Extraordinary meetings shall be held if the Chairman deems it necessary, or if at least 2 committee members put forward a request.

16.-(1) The agenda of the safety committee's ordinary meetings shall be made available to other employees at the installation via notices at the installation no later than 10 days prior to the meeting.

(2) Minutes of the safety committee's meetings shall be prepared. The minutes, which must be approved by participants at the meetings, shall be submitted to members of the committee, as well as be made available to all employees at the installation by posting a notice at a suitable location.

(3) Additionally, the offshore medic shall participate in meetings of the safety committee.
Tasks of the safety group

17.-(1) The daily tasks shall be performed by the safety group within the areas of the installation covered by the safety group.

(2) These tasks include:

  1. managing and participating in activities for the protection of employees and the prevention of risks, 
  2. participating in the organisation of health and safety activities, and participating in the preparation of the installation's health and safety document, including absenteeism due to sickness, in accordance with existing principles of prevention, 
  3. ensuring that health and safety risks have been reduced to a level as low as reasonably practicable cf. Executive Order on Management of Safety and Health in connection with Offshore Oil and Gas Operations, etc., 
  4. ensuring that effective instruction and training is adapted to the needs of the employees, 
  5. participating in the follow-up of accidents and occupational diseases as well as the sources of these,
  6. encouraging the individual to act in a manner that futhers their own and others' health and safety, 
  7. serving as a liaison between the employees and the safety committee, 
  8. submitting health and safety issues which cannot be resolved by the safety group or which are general for the entire installation, to the safety committee and 
  9. submitting any proposals for improvements in health and safety conditions to the safety committee.

(3) The safety group shall be consulted before any enquiry to special experts for assistance in resolving health and safety issues that involve the work areas of the safety group.

18.-(1) The safety group shall address risks in connection with the occurrence of health and safety issues and, if the risk cannot be mitigated on site, inform the offshore installation manager of this.

(2) If there is not time to inform the offshore installation manager, and the safety group deems that there is a considerable, imminent risk to the health and safety of employees which the group is unable to avert, the safety group shall be entitled to suspend work or the work process to the extent required to avert the risk. The safety group shall immediately notify the offshore installation manager of the suspension and explain why the suspension was necessary.

(3) The offshore installation manager shall subsequently inform the chairman of the safety committee of the notifications received pursuant to subsections (1) and (2).

Part 4 Agreements

19.-(1) The provisions of sections 8-13 shall not apply insofar as, in order to enhance and improve the enterprise's cooperation on health and safety

  1. an agreement has been established on the organisation of cooperation on health and safety between one or more employee organisation(s) and the corresponding employer organisation(s), the operator and the owner, respectively, or other employers or those authorised for such purposes and
  2. the operator and the owner, respectively, who are subject to an agreement established under no.1, wherein an agreement has been established between the operator and the owner, respectively, including possible supervisors and the offshore employees at one or several of the enterprise's installations.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall be able to document for the Working Environment Authority that the enterprise is subject to an agreement pursuant to subsection (1). Pursuant to subsection 1, no. 2, the enterprise agreement shall be in writing and be available to the enterprise's offshore employees.

(3) An agreement on organisation of cooperation on health and safety pursuant to subsection 1 shall not affect the performance of the tasks, functions, obligations and rights etc., laid down in this Executive Order.

(4) An enterprise agreement entered pursuant to subsection 1, no.2 shall ensure that organisation of cooperation on health and safety is in accordance with the structure for the offshore area of the operator and the owner, respectively and that the altered organisation strengthens and improves the cooperation.

(5). As a minimum, the enterprise agreement shall contain the following elements:

  1. A description of the activities/methods that may be applied to ensure that the altered organisation of cooperation on health and safety strengthens and improves the performance of tasks. ´
  2. A description of a procedure for the implementation and follow-up of the enterprise agreement at the installation(s) in question.
  3. A description on how tasks and functions are to be performed, including participation by supervisors and other employees in health and safety activities.
  4. A description of how the enterprise agreement can be amended and terminated. 5) An overview of the agreed organisation of cooperation on health and safety in the form of an organisation chart.

20.-(1) A safety organisation may be extended to also include

  1. several operationally linked operators and owners, respectively, or 
  2.  several employers at the same work site.

(2) Organisation pursuant to subsection (1) is conditional upon

  1. the establishment of an agreement pursuant to section 19 for each of the operators and owners and other employers covered by the common safety organisation,
  2. each of the employers covered by the common safety organisation participating in the common safety organisation themselves or appointing at least 1 employee to represent them in the common safety organisation,
  3. in addition to this, the participation of at least 1 elected safety representative, cf. section 24, from each of the employers covered by the common safety organisation,
  4. there being at least the same number of safety representatives in the safety organisation as there are supervisors and
  5. the total number of members of the common safety organisation being adequate in order to ensure that the safety organisation can carry out the daily, planning and collaborative tasks in a satisfactory manner for all participating employers.

21. For the purpose of strengthening cooperation on health and safety between cooperation committees, local contracting parties and the safety organisation, the tasks in connection with health and safety can be managed by a cooperation unit if

  1. an agreement has been established pursuant to section 1, and 
  2. people elected to manage health and safety activities are represented in the cooperation unit.

22. The duties of the safety representative and the trade union representative can be performed by the same person if

  1. the election of a safety representative and a trade union representative take place separately and 
  2. all employees that are not supervisors or enterprise managers pursuant to section 3(1), no.4 and 32, of the Offshore Safety Act are ensured the right to vote and can stand for election as safety representative, cf. section 24 (2)-(4) and (9).

23. Questions of interpretation and violations of the agreements established pursuant to section 19 shall be resolved according to the usual industrial procedure for the area. Violations of agreements established pursuant to section 19(1), no. 2 may not, however, be brought before the Danish Labour Court, but shall be settled by industrial arbitration.

Part 5 Election and appointment of members of the safety organisation

The safety representative

24.-(1) For operators and the owners, respectively, whose enterprise has installations which require the establishment of a safety organisation, cf. section 7, employees shall elect the required number of safety representatives as stipulated in section 13 or as stipulated in an agreement on the organisation of cooperation on health and safety pursuant to section 19.

(2) All employees without managerial powers shall have the right to vote. Supervisors and enterprise managers may not participate in elections pursuant to section 3(1), no. 4 and 32 of the Offshore Safety Act.

(3) The election of a safety representative shall be performed by the employees in each work area at the installation.

(4) If several shifts are employed for shift work and these shifts are not simultaneously present at the installation, or if for other reasons it is not appropriate for the shifts to have a common safety representative, the regulations of subsection (3), cf. subsection (1), shall apply for each shift.

(5). The election period is for 2 years, or until cessation of the employment of the safety representative in the work area in question at the installation ceases, cf. however subsection (6). An agreement may be established between the operator and the owner, respectively, and employees that future elections of safety representatives can be for a longer election period, however up to a maximum of 4 years.

(6) If the safety representative is absent due to leave, sickness or for some other reason for a continuous period of at least 4 months, a new safety representative may be elected for the remainder of the election period or for a new election period.

(7) The safety representative shall represent employees at the installation on issues regarding the health and safety of employees during work at the installation.

(8) The safety representative shall be protected against dismissal or any other impairment of conditions in the same manner as trade union representatives within the same or similar sector. The safety representative shall not be placed at a disadvantage due to activities in connection with the position.

(9) With respect to eligibility for election and the validity of elections, the rules governing the election of trade union representatives within a relevant or similar collective agreement area shall apply.

25. Disputes regarding election, eligibility for election and protection of a safety representative, and the validity of elections, including questions regarding which regulations apply and regarding breaches or interpretations of regulations, shall be settled by the normal procedures for settling industrial disputes, cf. the Danish Labour Court Act and industrial arbitration tribunals.

The supervisor

26.-(1) For operators and the owners, respectively, whose enterprise has installations which require the establishment of a safety organisation, cf. section 7, the operator and the owner, respectively, shall appoint the number of supervisors to be included in the safety organisation as stipulated in section 13 or as stipulated in an agreement on the organisation of cooperation on health and safety pursuant to section 19.

(2) When appointing supervisors, the operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that the supervisor has the necessary knowledge of his/her work area at the installation.

(3) A supervisor who is part of the safety organisation ,may not be placed at a disadvantage due to activities in connection herewith.

(4) If a supervisor in the safety group is dismissed after the expiration of a any trial period, and one of the parties alleges that the dismissal was caused by matters concerning health and safety, the supervisor's employment shall not be terminated during the period of notice until the matter has been negotiated by the organisation according to the regulations within the relevant collective agreement area or examined in accordance with the regulations of the Employers' and Salaried Employees' Act on negotiation and arbitration. Negotiation and arbitration shall take place as soon as possible.

Part 6 Other duties of the operator and owner

27.-(1) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that cooperation on health and safety is established, developed and maintained, such that members of the safety organisation can carry out their tasks in a satisfactory manner. The operator and the owner, respectively, shall also ensure that senior management of the enterprise are represented in the enterprise's safety organisation.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that members of the safety organisation are able to participate

  1. in the planning of health and safety activities within their work areas at the installation, including participating in the meetings mentioned in section 36(3),
  2. in the preparation of the risk assessment of the installation and
  3. in ensuring that health and safety risks are reduced to a level as low as reasonably practicable cf. Executive Order on Management of Safety and Health in connection with Offshore Oil and Gas Operations, etc.

(3) At installations with a safety organisation, the operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that the safety organisation follows up on serious accidents, serious poisoning or other health injuries or sources of these, and when there are other exceptional circumstances that require follow up.

28.-(1) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that employees are able to have regular contact with the part of the safety organisation the carries out tasks within their work area.

(2) If the safety representative or the supervisor of the safety organisation is not present, it shall be ensured that the employees are able to summon a responsible representative of the enterprise.

(3) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that employees and other employers are informed of who are members of the safety groups and safety committees.

29.-(1) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that safety representatives and supervisors in the safety organisation are allocated the appropriate amount of time available to carry out their duties for the installation and its health and safety standard.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that the necessary funds are made available for cooperation on health and safety, and shall likewise cover expenses in connection with activities of the safety representative and shall indemnify loss of earnings, expenses and loss in income in connection with required participation in training, cf. Executive Order on the health and safety training programme in connection with offshore oil and gas operations etc.

(3) Any dispute on this shall be settled by the normal procedures for settling industrial disputes, cf. the Danish Labour Court Act, and industrial arbitration tribunals.

(4) If requested by the safety representatives, the operator and the owner, respectively, shall allow them the opportunity of safely storing material such that it is inaccessible to unauthorized persons.

30. The operator and the owner, respectively, shall provide the security organisation, cf. section 10, or the security committee, cf. section 8, no.2, access to the mandatory lists and descriptions of events contained in reports on occupational accidents at the enterprise which are drawn up pursuant to the Executive Order on registration and notification of industrial injuries etc. in connection with offshore oil and gas operations. The same shall applies to the individual safety groups, cf. section 8, no.1, within their area.

31. The operator and the owner, respectively, shall inform members of the safety organisation of decisions made by the Danish Working Environment Authority and of any written improvement notices issued by the Danish Working Environment Authority. Members of the safety organisation shall furthermore be informed of other written information on protection and prevention activities from the Danish Working Environment Authority or other specialist experts.

Cooperation between several employers and others at the same installation

32.-(1) At installations where, in addition to the operator and the owner, respectively, other employers allow work to be carried out, the operator and the owner, respectively, cooperation with the other employers shall ensure that cooperation on health and safety for everyone employed at the installation is organised and performed.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall coordinate measures to manage the health and safety of employees, which shall be carried out by the individual employers at the installation. The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that an agreement in this regard is established with the individual owners.

(3) For the purpose of coordinating their measures for ensuring health and safety the operator and the owner, respectively, and the other employers shall inform each other about the risks in connection with the individual employer's operations at the installation. The individual employer shall forward the information received to its employees.

33.-(1) The individual employer at the installation shall ensure that the measures agreed upon with the operator and the owner, respectively, cf. section 32(2), are implemented and maintained, as well as ensure an effective supervision of these.

(2) Employees working at an installation where several employers have work carried out, shall in addition to complying with the regulations which apply to the work which they are to perform, also comply with the regulations which apply to the cooperation of the employers, cf. section 32.

34.-(1) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall coordinate cooperation between employers on health and safety by holding meetings, as well as through personal contact at the installation.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, the employers or their representatives, as well as the security groups at the installation shall participate in these meetings.

35. Sections 32-34 shall apply correspondingly to work not performed for an employer.
Coordination of health and safety activities between installations

36.-(1) Where the operator and the owner, respectively, operate several installations, it shall ensure the coordination of cooperation between the safety committees and safety groups.

(2) The operator and the owner, respectively, shall ensure that members of the individual safety committees have access to the minutes of meetings of the safety committees at other installations.

(3) An operator and owner, respectively, which run several installations, shall ensure that members of the safety organisation have the opportunity to meet 1-2 times a year. At these meetings, initiatives of the individual safety committees shall be discussed, and experience from the individual installations regarding health and safety issues may be exchanged.

Part 7 Exemption

37. The Danish Working Environment Authority may, in exceptional circumstances, grant exemptions from the Executive Order, provided that doing so is deemed reasonable and justifiable from a health and safety perspective, and to the extent that doing so is commensurate with Directive 89/391/EEC on the introduction of measures to encourage improvements in the health and safety of workers at work.

Part 8 Inspection

38. Individual members of the safety organisation are entitled to meet with the supervisory authority during an inspection visit at the installation.

Part 9 Penalties

39.-(1) Unless a more severe penalty is due under the Offshore Safety Act or other legislation, anyone who violates section 5(2), sections 6 and 7, section 14(3) and (4), section 24(1), section 26(1), and sections 27-36, shall be liable to a fine.

(2) For violation of the provisions of subsection (1), within the framework of section 71 of the Offshore Safety Act, the employer may be subject to a fine, notwithstanding the fact that the violation cannot be attributed to the employer as intentional or negligent. A condition for the individual employer being subject to a fine is that the violation can be attributed to one or more persons attached to the enterprise or to the enterprise itself. No alternative penalty shall be stipulated in lieu of such a fine.

(3) Enterprises etc. (legal persons) may be subject to criminal liability according to the provisions in chapter 5 of the Criminal Code.

Part 10 Entry into force etc.

40.-(1) This Executive Order shall enter into force on 1 November 2015.
(2) The following Executive Orders shall be repealed:

  1. Executive Order no. 1504 of 15 December 2010 on Health and Safety Activities at Permanent Offshore Installations.
  2. Executive Order no. 1505 of 15 December 2010 on Health and Safety Activities at Mobile Offshore Installations.

The Danish Working Environment Authority, 23 October 2015
Peter Vesterheden
/ Katrine Krone