Outer Continental Shelf Civil Penalties, 12823-12827 [E7-4876]

Download as PDF 12823 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 52 / Monday, March 19, 2007 / Notices FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Minerals Management Service Outer Continental Shelf Civil Penalties Minerals Management Service (MMS), Interior. ACTION: Notice summarizing Outer Continental Shelf Civil Penalties paid from January 1, 2006, through December 31, 2006. AGENCY: SUMMARY: This notice provides a listing of civil penalties paid from January 1, 2006, through December 31, 2006, for violations of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA). The goal of the MMS Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Civil Penalties Program is to assure safe and clean operations in the OCS. Through the pursuit, assessment, and collection of civil penalties and referrals for the consideration of criminal penalties, the program is designed to encourage compliance with OCS statutes and regulations. The purpose of publishing the penalties summary is to provide information to the public on violations of special concern in OCS operations and to provide an additional incentive for safe and environmentally sound operations. Joanne McCammon, Program Coordinator, at 703–787–1292. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA 90) strengthened section 24 of the OCSLA Amendments of 1978. Subtitle B of OPA 90, titled ‘‘Penalties,’’ increased the amount of the civil penalty from a maximum of $10,000 to a maximum of $20,000 per violation for each day of noncompliance. More importantly, in cases where a failure to comply with applicable regulations constitutes or constituted a threat of serious, irreparable, or immediate harm or damage to life (including fish and other aquatic life); property; any mineral deposit; or the marine, coastal, or human environment; OPA 90 provided the Secretary of the Interior (Secretary) with the authority to assess a civil penalty without regard to the requirement of expiration of a period of time allowed for corrective action. The provisions of OPA 90 also require the Secretary to adjust the maximum civil penalty to reflect any increases in the Consumer Price Index. Every 3 years, MMS analyzes the civil penalty maximum amount in conjunction with the CPI prepared by the U.S. Department of Labor. If an adjustment is necessary, MMS informs the public through the Federal Register of the new maximum amount. The MMS has published regulations adjusting the civil penalty assessment to $25,000 on August 8, 1997 (62 FR 42668), and to $30,000 on November 28, 2003 (68 FR 61622). Between August 18, 1990, and January 2007, MMS initiated 583 civil penalty reviews. Operators have paid 459 civil penalties for a total of $15,370,792 in fines. On September 1, 1997, the Associate Director for Offshore Minerals Management issued a notice informing lessees and operators of Federal oil, gas, and sulphur leases in the OCS that MMS will annually publish a summary of OCS civil penalties paid. The annual summary will highlight the identity of the party, the regulation violated, and the amount paid. The following table provides a listing of the 41 penalties paid between January 1, 2006, and December 31, 2006. The total amount collected was $1,480,000. A quarterly update of the list is posted on MMS’s home page, https://www.mms.gov/ civilpenalties/CP_2006.HTM. 2006 CIVIL/CRIMINAL PENALTIES SUMMARY; ALL PENALTIES PAID IN CALENDAR 2006 [01/01/2006–12/31/2006] Operator name (contractor) and case No. Violation and date(s) The Houston Exploration Company. (Grasso Production Management) G–2003–004 ................................. PetroQuest Energy, LLC .............. (Wood Group Production Services). Failed to conduct one annual crane inspection ................................ G–2004–026 ................................. El Paso Production Oil and Gas Company. G–2005–007 ................................. Exxon Mobil Corporation .............. ycherry on PROD1PC64 with NOTICES G–2005–012 ................................. Apache Corporation ..................... (Wood Group Production Services). G–2005–014 ................................. Noble Energy, Inc ........................ (Hercules Offshore Drilling) .......... G–2005–015 ................................. Energy Partners Ltd ..................... G–2005–016 ................................. VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:49 Mar 16, 2007 Penalty paid and date paid 7/1/02–9/30/02 Missing grating & handrails, corroded unsafe steps, and severe corrosion around the fuel scrubber created an unsafe situation for personnel. Also, the flowline and departing pipeline did not have secondary over-pressure protection. 6/29/04–6/29/04 Explosion and fire occurred on platform from welding and cutting operations near hydrocarbons. 12/23/04–12/23/04 The Pressure Safety Low (PSL) for Well G–24 had the incorrect spring and piston installed; the spring tension was backed off to a point where it would not function. This violation occurred for 11 days. 12/19/04–12/29/04 During an annual inspection, the inspector discovered that the Emergency Shut Down (ESD) stations for both the North and South boat landings were out-of-service. 10/15/04–10/18/04 The gas detector panel that monitors the mud pit room and shale shaker area was found to be in bypass during a monthly rig inspection. The operator forgot to put it back in service after calibrating the sensors. When the panel was taken out of bypass and tested, the audible alarm failed to activate. 2/23/05–3/2/05 The level safety high (LSH) shut-in sensor for the deck drain sump tank was bypassed at the main panel. Neither the LSH nor the operating condition of the sump tank were being monitored by platform personnel. 3/2/05–3/2/05 Jkt 211001 PO 00000 Frm 00072 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\19MRN1.SGM Regulation(s) violated (30 CFR) $10,000 8/25/06 § 250.108. $60,000 1/3/06 § 250.802(b), § 250.107. $25,000 2/7/06 § 250.107 $25,000 6/8/06 § 250.803(b)(2)(i). $28,000 3/10/06 § 250.803. $160,000 2/15/06 § 250.459(b). $8,000 1/10/06 § 250.803(c). 19MRN1 12824 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 52 / Monday, March 19, 2007 / Notices 2006 CIVIL/CRIMINAL PENALTIES SUMMARY; ALL PENALTIES PAID IN CALENDAR 2006—Continued [01/01/2006–12/31/2006] Operator name (contractor) and case No. Violation and date(s) El Paso Production Oil and Gas Company. (Baker Energy, Inc.) ..................... G–2005–020 ................................. Apache Corporation ..................... (Wood Group Production Services). G–2005–021 ................................. Apache Corporation ..................... (Wood Group Production Services). Shut down valve connected in such a way that it would not operate as designed; pressure would not bleed off if an upset had occurred. 3/10/05–3/10/05 Grating missing on the plus 10 deck level in two areas and area not barricaded to prevent personnel from entering. G–2005–022 ................................. ATP Oil & Gas Corporation ......... (Wood Group Production Services). G–2005–023 ................................. Millennium Offshore Group, Inc ... (TODCO) ...................................... G–2005–024 ................................. Noble Energy ............................... G–2005–025 ................................. Apache Corporation ..................... G–2005–026 ................................. Pioneer Natural Resources USA, Inc. G–2005–027 ................................. SPN Resources, LLC ................... G–2005–028 ................................. ATP Oil & Gas Corporation ......... G–2006–001 ................................. Petroquest Energy, LLC ............... (Grasso Production Management) ycherry on PROD1PC64 with NOTICES G–2006–002 ................................. VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:49 Mar 16, 2007 Penalty paid and date paid $10,000 8/7/06 PO 00000 Frm 00073 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\19MRN1.SGM § 250.803(c). $21,000 6/22/06 § 250.803(c). $10,000 7/27/06 § 250.107. $8,000 3/24/06 § 250.803(c). $28,000 5/11/06 § 250.107, § 250.615(c). $45,000 5/10/06 § 250.300(b), § 250.300(a), § 250.107(a). $10,000 6/13/06 § 250.300(b). $5,000 6/27/06 § 250.803(c). $20,000 6/8/06 19MRN1 § 250.107. $24,000 3/13/06 5/17/05–5/19/05 Unsafe and un-workmanlike operations were conducted in that the policies and procedures for Confined Space Entry were not being adhered to as per Operator’s Health, Safety and Environment manual. 3/30/05–3/30/05 During an inspection on May 2, 2005, the top and bottom isolation valves on the Level Safety Low (LSL) for the Bad Oil Tank (ABJ–5020) were found blocked out of service and not flagged or being monitored. 5/1/05–5/2/05 Apache failed to comply with the safe and workmanlike manner and well control requirements addressed in the regulations. A remote blowout preventer (BOP) station on the rig floor would not operate nor function the bottom pipe ram and the hydraulic (HCR) choke valve. An accumulation of hydraulic oil on derrick beams and board rack, oily and slippery hand rail, and no grating over mud pits demonstrated Apache’s failure to maintain all equipment in a safe condition. 7/25/05–7/25/05 Operations were not performed in a safe manner as Personnel attempted to replace a 2’’ ball valve on the water dump bypass line on the Chem-Electric Treater without draining the vessel. This created an uncontrolled oil release from the vessel over the structure’s open grating, and into the containment skid which was damaged and unable to contain the oil. As a result, approximately 1 barrel of oil polluted the Gulf. 6/10/05–6/10/05 The sump system could not automatically maintain the oil at a level sufficient to prevent discharge of oil into offshore waters. 5/6/05–5/6/05 The Level Safety Low (LSL) on the water section of the Heater Treater was bypassed and blocked out of service. Startup, maintenance, or testing procedures were not being performed; personnel were not monitoring the bypassed and blocked out functions; and the LSL was not flagged. 10/31/05–10/31/05 The Gas Detector Head (ASH) in the operator’s tool room was found covered with plastic wrap, which rendered it inoperable. Paint fumes were activating the ASH and plastic bags were placed over it to prevent nuisance shut-ins and to keep the fumes from contaminating the sensor. 6/19/05–6/20/05 § 250.802(b). $66,000 2/9/06 4/10/05–4/10/05 During a production follow-up inspection on February 20, 2005, wells A002 and A003 Surface Safety Valves (SSVs) were pinned out of service in the open position, and the wells were not flagged or monitored. 2/20/05–2/20/05 The vertical run Surface Safety Valve (SSV) for Well C–2 was bypassed and locked out of service with a locking cap. Jkt 211001 Regulation(s) violated (30 CFR) § 250.803(c). 12825 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 52 / Monday, March 19, 2007 / Notices 2006 CIVIL/CRIMINAL PENALTIES SUMMARY; ALL PENALTIES PAID IN CALENDAR 2006—Continued [01/01/2006–12/31/2006] Operator name (contractor) and case No. Violation and date(s) Apache Corporation ..................... An employee was injured since work had been performed in an unsafe and un-workmanlike manner. On 10–3–05, in order to access a well slot, 33’’ openings were cut in the grating on the well deck and on the lower production deck. The two holes cut in the decking were never barricaded, covered, guarded, or made inaccessible until 10–5–05, after the employee fell 8′ through the unguarded hole cut in the well deck and into the opening cut on the lower production deck. He was able to catch himself before falling completely through the second opening into the cross members and well slot guide 40′ below.. 10/3/05–10/5/05 While enroute to another destination, the Minerals Management Service (MMS) Inspectors noticed a multi-colored sheen on the water coming from the ST 196 Platform B. They landed on the platform and found oil flowing out of the vent hatch on the Sump Tank ABH–4760. The MMS Inspectors also found the Sump System did not automatically maintain the oil level sufficiently enough to prevent discharge of oil into offshore waters. 10/18/05–10/18/05 Three safety devices were found bypassed at the panel—the level safety low for the wet/dry oil tank, the shut down valve for the dry oil pump, and the shut down valve for the incoming pipeline. Proposed amount mitigated from information supplied in letter. 11/12/04–11/12/04 An injury occurred as a result of unsafe and un-workmanlike operations. A contract worker fell 30’ through an unsecured access hatch. Additionally, large openings in the deck were found and sections of heliport skirting were missing. 10/29/04–11/6/04 A pollution incident occurred as a result of improperly isolating the turbine compressor from the production train. 9/10/04–9/10/04 The primary and secondary surface safety valves (SSV), in addition to the fuel gas were bypassed on Caisson Well No. 28. The relays were placed in bypass by BP Exploration and Production employees (acting as contractors for Tana) on February 14, 2005. When an upset occurred on February 19, 2005, on the upstream processing platform, the Well No. 28 did not shut in due to these safety devices being bypassed. The pipeline experienced overpressure and the flange gasket ruptured allowing gas/condensate to escape. The Well was shut in using the boat landing emergency shut down pull loop. 2/14/05–2/19/05 The pressure safety low (PSL) on the departing high-pressure transfer gas pipeline (KAH–103) was by-passed at the master panel, leaving the pipeline unprotected from a leak or rupture. The relay was not flagged and conditions were not being monitored. 7/6/05–7/7/05 Pollution occurred in offshore waters from overflow of vessel to deck caused from a pipeline being tested which was using FSVs instead of block valves. This overflow went to the deck containment system and the deck drain sump system tank was inoperable. 8/26/05–8/26/05 The fuel gas supply for the sump pump was manually closed, placing the sump pump in an out of service mode. Neither the sump pump nor the sump tank where being monitored by platform personnel. 12/12/05–12/12/05 Operations were not performed in a safe and workmanlike manner, and equipment had not been maintained in a safe condition. Pollution occurred since a fuel tank was filled beyond capacity and the sump system had not been properly maintained. 6/17/05–6/17/05 G–2006–003 ................................. Noble Energy, Inc ........................ G–2006–004 ................................. Kerr-McGee Oil & Gas Corporation. G–2006–005 ................................. ATP Oil & Gas Corporation ......... G–2006–006 ................................. Union Oil Company of California G–2006–007 ................................. Tana Exploration Company, LLC G–2006–008 ................................. Energy Partners, Ltd .................... G–2006–009 ................................. Arena Offshore, LLC .................... (Island Operators Co., Inc.) ......... ycherry on PROD1PC64 with NOTICES G–2006–010 ................................. Callon Petroleum Operating Company. G–2006–011 ................................. Forest Oil Corporation .................. (Production Management Industries, LLC). G–2006–012 ................................. VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:49 Mar 16, 2007 Jkt 211001 PO 00000 Frm 00074 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Penalty paid and date paid E:\FR\FM\19MRN1.SGM Regulation(s) violated (30 CFR) $70,000 5/16/06 § 250.107. $50,000 7/13/06 § 250.300(a), § 250.300(b). $15,000 7/19/06 § 250.1004, § 250.803. $110,000 12/29/06 § 250.107. $25,000 7/25/06 § 250.300(a). $165,000 8/31/06 § 250.803(c), § 250.803(c). $10,000 6/22/06 § 250.1004. $27,000 8/25/06 § 250.300(b), § 250.300(a). $5,000 5/11/06 § 250.300(b). $45,000 9/6/06 § 250.107, § 250.107, § 250.300(a). 19MRN1 12826 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 52 / Monday, March 19, 2007 / Notices 2006 CIVIL/CRIMINAL PENALTIES SUMMARY; ALL PENALTIES PAID IN CALENDAR 2006—Continued [01/01/2006–12/31/2006] Operator name (contractor) and case No. Violation and date(s) Palace Operating Company ......... (Island Operators Co.) ................. During an annual inspection, the MMS inspector detected that the Surface Safety Valve (SSV) on well #2 was locked open using a fusible SSV stem cap rendering the valve inoperable or bypassed. This valve would not close had an undesirable event occurred (under pressure or overpressure of the flowline). 11/28/05–11/28/05 The Emergency Shut Down Valves were bypassed on both boat landings. The two PSVs on the Intermediate Production Separator were found closed thus taking them out of service (bypassed). 8/15/05–8/21/05 The level safety low (LSL) on the atmospheric bad oil tank was manually closed placing it in bypass. 1/4/06–1/5/06 The Platform’s two primary means of escape had not been adequately maintained. Personnel on the platform had no safe means of egress due to missing grating and handrails. 1/3/06–1/3/06 Platform’s emergency equipment had not been adequately maintained. The winch and lower flange kit on the south capsule was severely corroded and unsafe for use. 8/9/05–8/9/05 The level controller which starts the sump pump was improperly set, therefore rendering the sump pump incapable of maintaining the oil in the sump tank at a safe level to prevent discharge into the gulf waters. 9/19/04–9/19/04 The Emergency Shut Down (ESD) Stations on the condensate accumulator deck, sump deck, well bay area, and boat landing were all rendered out of service since the ESD supply line was disconnected. 11/9/04–11/9/04 The Temperature Sensing Element for the +10 deck drain Sump Pump was bypassed. 9/23/04–9/30/04 Operations were not performed in a safe and workmanlike manner. While making an assessment of the unsafe conditions on the platform that needed repairing, the construction crew did not barricade a 3′4″ x 3′4″ opening in the stairway landing. Later, one of the crew members was injured when he fell through the open hole, approximately 20′ and into the Gulf of Mexico. 2/10/06–2/10/06 While attempting to secure and barricade hurricane related damages on the sub-cellar deck, a contract employee was seriously injured since the work was not performed in a safe and workmanlike manner. He was not wearing fall protection while he was in the direct vicinity of open holes in the deck grating, and he fell approximately 25–30 feet through a 3′ x 3′ opening onto the +10 deck. 2/10/06–2/10/06 The main safety panel was bypassed during testing. In order to test any safety device on this panel, they all had to be placed in bypass. When the panel was in total bypass, the supply to the indicators was removed not allowing them to trip when an abnormal condition became present, thus there was no way for personnel to monitor the bypassed devices. 7/17/06–7/17/06 During well recompletion operations, an accident occurred, which resulted in a loss of well control (blowout), and a 3 gallon oil spill. An investigation revealed removal of a lockdown pin from the well head during the alignment of the split tube hanger had circumvented the blowout preventer system. 11/19/04–11/19/04 G–2006–013 ................................. Total E&P USA, Inc ..................... G–2006–014 ................................. Northstar Gulfsands, LLC ............ (Offshore Contract Services LLC) G–2006–015 ................................. Nippon Oil Exploration U.S.A ....... G–2006–017 ................................. Chevron U.S.A. Inc ...................... G–2006–018 ................................. ATP Oil & Gas Corporation ......... G–2006–019 ................................. ATP Oil & Gas Corporation ......... (Wood Group Production Services). G–2006–020 ................................. Marathon Oil Company ................ G–2006–022 ................................. BP America Production Company G–2006–023 ................................. GOM Shelf LLC ............................ (Crown Oilfield Services, Inc.) ..... G–2006–026 ................................. Pioneer Natural Resources USA, Inc. ycherry on PROD1PC64 with NOTICES G–2006–034 ................................. Venoco, Inc .................................. P–2005–001 ................................. VerDate Aug<31>2005 17:49 Mar 16, 2007 Jkt 211001 PO 00000 Frm 00075 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Penalty paid and date paid E:\FR\FM\19MRN1.SGM Regulation(s) violated (30 CFR) $5,000 10/27/06 § 250.803(c). $130,000 6/16/06 § 250.803, § 250.803. $15,000 9/6/06 § 250.803. $30,000 9/28/06 § 250.107. $30,000 10/30/06 § 250.107(a)(2). $12,000 9/22/06 § 250.300(b). $20,000 9/22/06 § 250.803(c). $40,000 11/9/06 § 250.803. $25,000 10/25/06 § 250.107(a)(1). $30,000 10/6/06 § 250.107(a). $20,000 12/13/06 § 250.803(c). $30,000 4/27/06 § 250.300(a), § 250.107(a). 19MRN1 12827 Federal Register / Vol. 72, No. 52 / Monday, March 19, 2007 / Notices 2006 CIVIL/CRIMINAL PENALTIES SUMMARY; ALL PENALTIES PAID IN CALENDAR 2006—Continued [01/01/2006–12/31/2006] Operator name (contractor) and case No. Violation and date(s) Nuevo Energy Company .............. On February 16, 2004, a transformer on a variable speed drive (VSD) unit over-heated and caught fire. A Minerals Management Service (MMS) investigation of the incident determined the fire, which was confined to the motor control center room, was due to the following causes: The electrical overload protection on the VSD had been placed in a non-functional mode. High amperage from a downhole electric submersible pump caused transformer to overload on the VSD, which subsequently overheated. Melting metal from the transformer dripped into a pan of threading oil below the transformer. A cotton glove that was laying in the pan of threading oil ignited. The resultant fire was extinguished by platform personnel investigating the source of smoke from the motor control center. 2/16/04–2/16/04 3/31/04–3/31/04 P–2004–002 ................................. Penalty paid and date paid $8,000 2/8/06 Regulation(s) violated (30 CFR) § 250.107, § 250.803(c)(1). Total Penalties Paid: 1/1/2006–12/31/2006, 41 Cases: ($1,480,000) The purpose of publishing the penalties summary is to provide information to the public on violations of special concern in OCS operations and to provide an additional incentive for safe and environmentally sound operations. Authority: 43 U.S.C. 1331 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701. Dated: January 30, 2007. Gregory J. Gould, Acting Associate Director for Offshore Minerals Management. [FR Doc. E7–4876 Filed 3–16–07; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–MR–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR General Management Plan/Draft Environmental Impact Statement, Valley Forge National Historical Park, Pennsylvania National Park Service, Department of the Interior. ACTION: Notice of Availability of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the General Management Plan, Valley Forge National Historical Park. ycherry on PROD1PC64 with NOTICES AGENCY: SUMMARY: Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, 42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C), the National Park Service announces the availability of the Draft General Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement for Valley Forge National Historical Park, Pennsylvania. An electronic version of the document is currently available for public review on the National Park Service Planning, Environment and 17:49 Mar 16, 2007 The National Park Service will accept comments on the Draft General Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement from the public for a period of 60 days following publication of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. Public meetings will be scheduled during the comment period. Interested persons may check the park Web site at https:// www.nps.gov/vafo for date, time, and place. DATES: Information will be available for public review and comment online at https:// parkplanning.nps.gov, at the Valley Forge NHP Welcome Center, 1400 North Outer Line Drive, King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, 610–783–1099 and at the following locations: Lower Providence Community Library, 50 Parklane Drive, Eagleville, PA 19403–1171. Tredyffrin Public Library, 582 Upper Gulph Rd., Strafford-Wayne, PA 19087–2052. Phoenixville Public Library, 183 Second Avenue, Phoenixville, PA 19460. Montgomery County-Norristown Public Library, 1001 Powell Street, Norristown, PA 19401. Upper Merion Township Library, 175 West Valley Forge Road, King of Prussia, PA 19406. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Deirdre Gibson, Valley Forge NHP, 1400 ADDRESSES: National Park Service VerDate Aug<31>2005 Public Comment Web site at https:// parkplanning.nps.gov. However, printed copies of the document will not be available until on or about February, 2007. Jkt 211001 PO 00000 Frm 00076 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 North Outer Line Drive, King of Prussia, Pennsylvania 19406, Deirdre_gibson@nps.gov. If you wish to comment, you may submit your comments by any one of several methods. You may mail comments to Superintendent Mike Caldwell, Valley Forge NHP, 1400 North Outer Line Drive, King of Prussia, PA 19406. You may also comment via the Internet at https://parkplanning.nps.gov. If you do not receive a confirmation from the system that we have received your Internet message, contact us directly (Deirdre Gibson, 610–783–1047). Finally, you may hand-deliver comments to Valley Forge NHP, 1400 North Outer Line Drive, King of Prussia, PA 19406. Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Dated: January 22, 2007. Michael A. Caldwell, Acting Regional Director, Northeast Region, National Park Service. [FR Doc. E7–4907 Filed 3–16–07; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–DJ–P E:\FR\FM\19MRN1.SGM 19MRN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 72, Number 52 (Monday, March 19, 2007)]
[Notices]
[Pages 12823-12827]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E7-4876]



[[Page 12823]]

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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Minerals Management Service


Outer Continental Shelf Civil Penalties

AGENCY: Minerals Management Service (MMS), Interior.

ACTION: Notice summarizing Outer Continental Shelf Civil Penalties paid 
from January 1, 2006, through December 31, 2006.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: This notice provides a listing of civil penalties paid from 
January 1, 2006, through December 31, 2006, for violations of the Outer 
Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA). The goal of the MMS Outer 
Continental Shelf (OCS) Civil Penalties Program is to assure safe and 
clean operations in the OCS. Through the pursuit, assessment, and 
collection of civil penalties and referrals for the consideration of 
criminal penalties, the program is designed to encourage compliance 
with OCS statutes and regulations. The purpose of publishing the 
penalties summary is to provide information to the public on violations 
of special concern in OCS operations and to provide an additional 
incentive for safe and environmentally sound operations.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Joanne McCammon, Program Coordinator, 
at 703-787-1292.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA 90) 
strengthened section 24 of the OCSLA Amendments of 1978. Subtitle B of 
OPA 90, titled ``Penalties,'' increased the amount of the civil penalty 
from a maximum of $10,000 to a maximum of $20,000 per violation for 
each day of noncompliance. More importantly, in cases where a failure 
to comply with applicable regulations constitutes or constituted a 
threat of serious, irreparable, or immediate harm or damage to life 
(including fish and other aquatic life); property; any mineral deposit; 
or the marine, coastal, or human environment; OPA 90 provided the 
Secretary of the Interior (Secretary) with the authority to assess a 
civil penalty without regard to the requirement of expiration of a 
period of time allowed for corrective action.
    The provisions of OPA 90 also require the Secretary to adjust the 
maximum civil penalty to reflect any increases in the Consumer Price 
Index. Every 3 years, MMS analyzes the civil penalty maximum amount in 
conjunction with the CPI prepared by the U.S. Department of Labor. If 
an adjustment is necessary, MMS informs the public through the Federal 
Register of the new maximum amount. The MMS has published regulations 
adjusting the civil penalty assessment to $25,000 on August 8, 1997 (62 
FR 42668), and to $30,000 on November 28, 2003 (68 FR 61622).
    Between August 18, 1990, and January 2007, MMS initiated 583 civil 
penalty reviews. Operators have paid 459 civil penalties for a total of 
$15,370,792 in fines.
    On September 1, 1997, the Associate Director for Offshore Minerals 
Management issued a notice informing lessees and operators of Federal 
oil, gas, and sulphur leases in the OCS that MMS will annually publish 
a summary of OCS civil penalties paid. The annual summary will 
highlight the identity of the party, the regulation violated, and the 
amount paid. The following table provides a listing of the 41 penalties 
paid between January 1, 2006, and December 31, 2006. The total amount 
collected was $1,480,000. A quarterly update of the list is posted on 
MMS's home page, https://www.mms.gov/civilpenalties/CP_2006.HTM.

                   2006 Civil/Criminal Penalties Summary; All Penalties Paid in Calendar 2006
                                             [01/01/2006-12/31/2006]
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
  Operator name (contractor) and                                  Penalty paid     Regulation(s)  violated  (30
             case No.                  Violation and date(s)     and date paid                 CFR)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The Houston Exploration Company...  Failed to conduct one               $10,000  Sec.   250.108.
(Grasso Production Management)....   annual crane inspection.           8/25/06
G-2003-004........................  7/1/02-9/30/02              ...............
PetroQuest Energy, LLC............  Missing grating &                   $60,000  Sec.   250.802(b),
(Wood Group Production Services)..   handrails, corroded                 1/3/06  Sec.   250.107.
                                     unsafe steps, and severe
                                     corrosion around the fuel
                                     scrubber created an
                                     unsafe situation for
                                     personnel. Also, the
                                     flowline and departing
                                     pipeline did not have
                                     secondary over-pressure
                                     protection.
G-2004-026........................  6/29/04-6/29/04             ...............
El Paso Production Oil and Gas      Explosion and fire                  $25,000  Sec.   250.107
 Company.                            occurred on platform from           2/7/06
                                     welding and cutting
                                     operations near
                                     hydrocarbons.
G-2005-007........................  12/23/04-12/23/04           ...............
Exxon Mobil Corporation...........  The Pressure Safety Low             $25,000  Sec.   250.803(b)(2)(i).
                                     (PSL) for Well G-24 had             6/8/06
                                     the incorrect spring and
                                     piston installed; the
                                     spring tension was backed
                                     off to a point where it
                                     would not function. This
                                     violation occurred for 11
                                     days.
G-2005-012........................  12/19/04-12/29/04           ...............
Apache Corporation................  During an annual                    $28,000  Sec.   250.803.
(Wood Group Production Services)..   inspection, the inspector          3/10/06
                                     discovered that the
                                     Emergency Shut Down (ESD)
                                     stations for both the
                                     North and South boat
                                     landings were out-of-
                                     service.
G-2005-014........................  10/15/04-10/18/04           ...............
Noble Energy, Inc.................  The gas detector panel             $160,000  Sec.   250.459(b).
(Hercules Offshore Drilling)......   that monitors the mud pit          2/15/06
                                     room and shale shaker
                                     area was found to be in
                                     bypass during a monthly
                                     rig inspection. The
                                     operator forgot to put it
                                     back in service after
                                     calibrating the sensors.
                                     When the panel was taken
                                     out of bypass and tested,
                                     the audible alarm failed
                                     to activate.
G-2005-015........................  2/23/05-3/2/05              ...............
Energy Partners Ltd...............  The level safety high                $8,000  Sec.   250.803(c).
                                     (LSH) shut-in sensor for           1/10/06
                                     the deck drain sump tank
                                     was bypassed at the main
                                     panel. Neither the LSH
                                     nor the operating
                                     condition of the sump
                                     tank were being monitored
                                     by platform personnel.
G-2005-016........................  3/2/05-3/2/05               ...............

[[Page 12824]]

 
El Paso Production Oil and Gas      Shut down valve connected           $10,000  Sec.   250.802(b).
 Company.                            in such a way that it               8/7/06
(Baker Energy, Inc.)..............   would not operate as
                                     designed; pressure would
                                     not bleed off if an upset
                                     had occurred.
G-2005-020........................  3/10/05-3/10/05             ...............
Apache Corporation................  Grating missing on the              $66,000  Sec.   250.107.
(Wood Group Production Services)..   plus 10 deck level in two           2/9/06
                                     areas and area not
                                     barricaded to prevent
                                     personnel from entering.
G-2005-021........................  4/10/05-4/10/05             ...............
Apache Corporation................  During a production follow-         $24,000  Sec.   250.803(c).
(Wood Group Production Services)..   up inspection on February          3/13/06
                                     20, 2005, wells A002 and
                                     A003 Surface Safety
                                     Valves (SSVs) were pinned
                                     out of service in the
                                     open position, and the
                                     wells were not flagged or
                                     monitored.
G-2005-022........................  2/20/05-2/20/05             ...............
ATP Oil & Gas Corporation.........  The vertical run Surface            $21,000  Sec.   250.803(c).
(Wood Group Production Services)..   Safety Valve (SSV) for             6/22/06
                                     Well C-2 was bypassed and
                                     locked out of service
                                     with a locking cap.
G-2005-023........................  5/17/05-5/19/05             ...............
Millennium Offshore Group, Inc....  Unsafe and un-workmanlike           $10,000  Sec.   250.107.
(TODCO)...........................   operations were conducted          7/27/06
                                     in that the policies and
                                     procedures for Confined
                                     Space Entry were not
                                     being adhered to as per
                                     Operator's Health, Safety
                                     and Environment manual.
G-2005-024........................  3/30/05-3/30/05             ...............
Noble Energy......................  During an inspection on              $8,000  Sec.   250.803(c).
                                     May 2, 2005, the top and           3/24/06
                                     bottom isolation valves
                                     on the Level Safety Low
                                     (LSL) for the Bad Oil
                                     Tank (ABJ-5020) were
                                     found blocked out of
                                     service and not flagged
                                     or being monitored.
G-2005-025........................  5/1/05-5/2/05               ...............
Apache Corporation................  Apache failed to comply             $28,000  Sec.   250.107,
                                     with the safe and                  5/11/06  Sec.   250.615(c).
                                     workmanlike manner and
                                     well control requirements
                                     addressed in the
                                     regulations. A remote
                                     blowout preventer (BOP)
                                     station on the rig floor
                                     would not operate nor
                                     function the bottom pipe
                                     ram and the hydraulic
                                     (HCR) choke valve. An
                                     accumulation of hydraulic
                                     oil on derrick beams and
                                     board rack, oily and
                                     slippery hand rail, and
                                     no grating over mud pits
                                     demonstrated Apache's
                                     failure to maintain all
                                     equipment in a safe
                                     condition.
G-2005-026........................  7/25/05-7/25/05             ...............
Pioneer Natural Resources USA, Inc  Operations were not                 $45,000  Sec.   250.300(b),
                                     performed in a safe                5/10/06  Sec.   250.300(a),
                                     manner as Personnel                         Sec.   250.107(a).
                                     attempted to replace a
                                     2'' ball valve on the
                                     water dump bypass line on
                                     the Chem-Electric Treater
                                     without draining the
                                     vessel. This created an
                                     uncontrolled oil release
                                     from the vessel over the
                                     structure's open grating,
                                     and into the containment
                                     skid which was damaged
                                     and unable to contain the
                                     oil. As a result,
                                     approximately 1 barrel of
                                     oil polluted the Gulf.
G-2005-027........................  6/10/05-6/10/05             ...............
SPN Resources, LLC................  The sump system could not           $10,000  Sec.   250.300(b).
                                     automatically maintain             6/13/06
                                     the oil at a level
                                     sufficient to prevent
                                     discharge of oil into
                                     offshore waters.
G-2005-028........................  5/6/05-5/6/05               ...............
ATP Oil & Gas Corporation.........  The Level Safety Low (LSL)           $5,000  Sec.   250.803(c).
                                     on the water section of            6/27/06
                                     the Heater Treater was
                                     bypassed and blocked out
                                     of service. Startup,
                                     maintenance, or testing
                                     procedures were not being
                                     performed; personnel were
                                     not monitoring the
                                     bypassed and blocked out
                                     functions; and the LSL
                                     was not flagged.
G-2006-001........................  10/31/05-10/31/05           ...............
Petroquest Energy, LLC............  The Gas Detector Head               $20,000  Sec.   250.803(c).
(Grasso Production Management)....   (ASH) in the operator's             6/8/06
                                     tool room was found
                                     covered with plastic
                                     wrap, which rendered it
                                     inoperable. Paint fumes
                                     were activating the ASH
                                     and plastic bags were
                                     placed over it to prevent
                                     nuisance shut-ins and to
                                     keep the fumes from
                                     contaminating the sensor.
G-2006-002........................  6/19/05-6/20/05             ...............

[[Page 12825]]

 
Apache Corporation................  An employee was injured             $70,000  Sec.   250.107.
                                     since work had been                5/16/06
                                     performed in an unsafe
                                     and un-workmanlike
                                     manner. On 10-3-05, in
                                     order to access a well
                                     slot, 33'' openings were
                                     cut in the grating on the
                                     well deck and on the
                                     lower production deck.
                                     The two holes cut in the
                                     decking were never
                                     barricaded, covered,
                                     guarded, or made
                                     inaccessible until 10-5-
                                     05, after the employee
                                     fell 8' through the
                                     unguarded hole cut in the
                                     well deck and into the
                                     opening cut on the lower
                                     production deck. He was
                                     able to catch himself
                                     before falling completely
                                     through the second
                                     opening into the cross
                                     members and well slot
                                     guide 40' below..
G-2006-003........................  10/3/05-10/5/05             ...............
Noble Energy, Inc.................  While enroute to another            $50,000  Sec.   250.300(a),
                                     destination, the Minerals          7/13/06  Sec.   250.300(b).
                                     Management Service (MMS)
                                     Inspectors noticed a
                                     multi-colored sheen on
                                     the water coming from the
                                     ST 196 Platform B. They
                                     landed on the platform
                                     and found oil flowing out
                                     of the vent hatch on the
                                     Sump Tank ABH-4760. The
                                     MMS Inspectors also found
                                     the Sump System did not
                                     automatically maintain
                                     the oil level
                                     sufficiently enough to
                                     prevent discharge of oil
                                     into offshore waters.
G-2006-004........................  10/18/05-10/18/05           ...............
Kerr-McGee Oil & Gas Corporation..  Three safety devices were           $15,000  Sec.   250.1004,
                                     found bypassed at the              7/19/06  Sec.   250.803.
                                     panel--the level safety
                                     low for the wet/dry oil
                                     tank, the shut down valve
                                     for the dry oil pump, and
                                     the shut down valve for
                                     the incoming pipeline.
                                     Proposed amount mitigated
                                     from information supplied
                                     in letter.
G-2006-005........................  11/12/04-11/12/04           ...............
ATP Oil & Gas Corporation.........  An injury occurred as a            $110,000  Sec.   250.107.
                                     result of unsafe and un-          12/29/06
                                     workmanlike operations. A
                                     contract worker fell 30'
                                     through an unsecured
                                     access hatch.
                                     Additionally, large
                                     openings in the deck were
                                     found and sections of
                                     heliport skirting were
                                     missing.
G-2006-006........................  10/29/04-11/6/04            ...............
Union Oil Company of California...  A pollution incident                $25,000  Sec.   250.300(a).
                                     occurred as a result of            7/25/06
                                     improperly isolating the
                                     turbine compressor from
                                     the production train.
G-2006-007........................  9/10/04-9/10/04             ...............
Tana Exploration Company, LLC.....  The primary and secondary          $165,000  Sec.   250.803(c),
                                     surface safety valves              8/31/06  Sec.   250.803(c).
                                     (SSV), in addition to the
                                     fuel gas were bypassed on
                                     Caisson Well No. 28. The
                                     relays were placed in
                                     bypass by BP Exploration
                                     and Production employees
                                     (acting as contractors
                                     for Tana) on February 14,
                                     2005. When an upset
                                     occurred on February 19,
                                     2005, on the upstream
                                     processing platform, the
                                     Well No. 28 did not shut
                                     in due to these safety
                                     devices being bypassed.
                                     The pipeline experienced
                                     overpressure and the
                                     flange gasket ruptured
                                     allowing gas/condensate
                                     to escape. The Well was
                                     shut in using the boat
                                     landing emergency shut
                                     down pull loop.
G-2006-008........................  2/14/05-2/19/05             ...............
Energy Partners, Ltd..............  The pressure safety low             $10,000  Sec.   250.1004.
                                     (PSL) on the departing             6/22/06
                                     high-pressure transfer
                                     gas pipeline (KAH-103)
                                     was by-passed at the
                                     master panel, leaving the
                                     pipeline unprotected from
                                     a leak or rupture. The
                                     relay was not flagged and
                                     conditions were not being
                                     monitored.
G-2006-009........................  7/6/05-7/7/05               ...............
Arena Offshore, LLC...............  Pollution occurred in               $27,000  Sec.   250.300(b),
(Island Operators Co., Inc.)......   offshore waters from               8/25/06  Sec.   250.300(a).
                                     overflow of vessel to
                                     deck caused from a
                                     pipeline being tested
                                     which was using FSVs
                                     instead of block valves.
                                     This overflow went to the
                                     deck containment system
                                     and the deck drain sump
                                     system tank was
                                     inoperable.
G-2006-010........................  8/26/05-8/26/05             ...............
Callon Petroleum Operating Company  The fuel gas supply for              $5,000  Sec.   250.300(b).
                                     the sump pump was                  5/11/06
                                     manually closed, placing
                                     the sump pump in an out
                                     of service mode. Neither
                                     the sump pump nor the
                                     sump tank where being
                                     monitored by platform
                                     personnel.
G-2006-011........................  12/12/05-12/12/05           ...............
Forest Oil Corporation............  Operations were not                 $45,000  Sec.   250.107,
(Production Management Industries,   performed in a safe and             9/6/06  Sec.   250.107,
 LLC).                               workmanlike manner, and                     Sec.   250.300(a).
                                     equipment had not been
                                     maintained in a safe
                                     condition. Pollution
                                     occurred since a fuel
                                     tank was filled beyond
                                     capacity and the sump
                                     system had not been
                                     properly maintained.
G-2006-012........................  6/17/05-6/17/05             ...............

[[Page 12826]]

 
Palace Operating Company..........  During an annual                     $5,000  Sec.   250.803(c).
(Island Operators Co.)............   inspection, the MMS               10/27/06
                                     inspector detected that
                                     the Surface Safety Valve
                                     (SSV) on well 2
                                     was locked open using a
                                     fusible SSV stem cap
                                     rendering the valve
                                     inoperable or by-passed.
                                     This valve would not
                                     close had an undesirable
                                     event occurred (under
                                     pressure or overpressure
                                     of the flowline).
G-2006-013........................  11/28/05-11/28/05           ...............
Total E&P USA, Inc................  The Emergency Shut Down            $130,000  Sec.   250.803,
                                     Valves were bypassed on            6/16/06  Sec.   250.803.
                                     both boat landings. The
                                     two PSVs on the
                                     Intermediate Production
                                     Separator were found
                                     closed thus taking them
                                     out of service (bypassed).
G-2006-014........................  8/15/05-8/21/05             ...............
Northstar Gulfsands, LLC..........  The level safety low (LSL)          $15,000  Sec.   250.803.
(Offshore Contract Services LLC)..   on the atmospheric bad              9/6/06
                                     oil tank was manually
                                     closed placing it in
                                     bypass.
G-2006-015........................  1/4/06-1/5/06               ...............
Nippon Oil Exploration U.S.A......  The Platform's two primary          $30,000  Sec.   250.107.
                                     means of escape had not            9/28/06
                                     been adequately
                                     maintained. Personnel on
                                     the platform had no safe
                                     means of egress due to
                                     missing grating and
                                     handrails.
G-2006-017........................  1/3/06-1/3/06               ...............
Chevron U.S.A. Inc................  Platform's emergency                $30,000  Sec.   250.107(a)(2).
                                     equipment had not been            10/30/06
                                     adequately maintained.
                                     The winch and lower
                                     flange kit on the south
                                     capsule was severely
                                     corroded and unsafe for
                                     use.
G-2006-018........................  8/9/05-8/9/05               ...............
ATP Oil & Gas Corporation.........  The level controller which          $12,000  Sec.   250.300(b).
                                     starts the sump pump was           9/22/06
                                     improperly set, therefore
                                     rendering the sump pump
                                     incapable of maintaining
                                     the oil in the sump tank
                                     at a safe level to
                                     prevent discharge into
                                     the gulf waters.
G-2006-019........................  9/19/04-9/19/04             ...............
ATP Oil & Gas Corporation.........  The Emergency Shut Down             $20,000  Sec.   250.803(c).
(Wood Group Production Services)..   (ESD) Stations on the              9/22/06
                                     condensate accumulator
                                     deck, sump deck, well bay
                                     area, and boat landing
                                     were all rendered out of
                                     service since the ESD
                                     supply line was
                                     disconnected.
G-2006-020........................  11/9/04-11/9/04             ...............
Marathon Oil Company..............  The Temperature Sensing             $40,000  Sec.   250.803.
                                     Element for the +10 deck           11/9/06
                                     drain Sump Pump was
                                     bypassed.
G-2006-022........................  9/23/04-9/30/04             ...............
BP America Production Company.....  Operations were not                 $25,000  Sec.   250.107(a)(1).
                                     performed in a safe and           10/25/06
                                     workmanlike manner. While
                                     making an assessment of
                                     the unsafe conditions on
                                     the platform that needed
                                     repairing, the
                                     construction crew did not
                                     barricade a 3'4'' x 3'4''
                                     opening in the stairway
                                     landing. Later, one of
                                     the crew members was
                                     injured when he fell
                                     through the open hole,
                                     approximately 20' and
                                     into the Gulf of Mexico.
G-2006-023........................  2/10/06-2/10/06             ...............
GOM Shelf LLC.....................  While attempting to secure          $30,000  Sec.   250.107(a).
(Crown Oilfield Services, Inc.)...   and barricade hurricane            10/6/06
                                     related damages on the
                                     sub-cellar deck, a
                                     contract employee was
                                     seriously injured since
                                     the work was not
                                     performed in a safe and
                                     workmanlike manner. He
                                     was not wearing fall
                                     protection while he was
                                     in the direct vicinity of
                                     open holes in the deck
                                     grating, and he fell
                                     approximately 25-30 feet
                                     through a 3' x 3' opening
                                     onto the +10 deck.
G-2006-026........................  2/10/06-2/10/06             ...............
Pioneer Natural Resources USA, Inc  The main safety panel was           $20,000  Sec.   250.803(c).
                                     bypassed during testing.          12/13/06
                                     In order to test any
                                     safety device on this
                                     panel, they all had to be
                                     placed in bypass. When
                                     the panel was in total
                                     bypass, the supply to the
                                     indicators was removed
                                     not allowing them to trip
                                     when an abnormal
                                     condition became present,
                                     thus there was no way for
                                     personnel to monitor the
                                     bypassed devices.
G-2006-034........................  7/17/06-7/17/06             ...............
Venoco, Inc.......................  During well recompletion            $30,000  Sec.   250.300(a),
                                     operations, an accident            4/27/06  Sec.   250.107(a).
                                     occurred, which resulted
                                     in a loss of well control
                                     (blowout), and a 3 gallon
                                     oil spill. An
                                     investigation revealed
                                     removal of a lockdown pin
                                     from the well head during
                                     the alignment of the
                                     split tube hanger had
                                     circumvented the blowout
                                     preventer system.
P-2005-001........................  11/19/04-11/19/04           ...............

[[Page 12827]]

 
Nuevo Energy Company..............  On February 16, 2004, a              $8,000  Sec.   250.107,
                                     transformer on a variable           2/8/06  Sec.   250.803(c)(1).
                                     speed drive (VSD) unit
                                     over-heated and caught
                                     fire. A Minerals
                                     Management Service (MMS)
                                     investigation of the
                                     incident determined the
                                     fire, which was confined
                                     to the motor control
                                     center room, was due to
                                     the following causes: The
                                     electrical overload
                                     protection on the VSD had
                                     been placed in a non-
                                     functional mode. High
                                     amperage from a downhole
                                     electric submersible pump
                                     caused transformer to
                                     overload on the VSD,
                                     which subsequently
                                     overheated. Melting metal
                                     from the transformer
                                     dripped into a pan of
                                     threading oil below the
                                     transformer. A cotton
                                     glove that was laying in
                                     the pan of threading oil
                                     ignited. The resultant
                                     fire was extinguished by
                                     platform personnel
                                     investigating the source
                                     of smoke from the motor
                                     control center.
P-2004-002........................  2/16/04-2/16/04             ...............
                                    3/31/04-3/31/04...........
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Total Penalties Paid: 1/1/2006-12/31/2006, 41 Cases: ($1,480,000)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The purpose of publishing the penalties summary is to provide 
information to the public on violations of special concern in OCS 
operations and to provide an additional incentive for safe and 
environmentally sound operations.

    Authority: 43 U.S.C. 1331 et seq., 31 U.S.C. 9701.

    Dated: January 30, 2007.
Gregory J. Gould,
Acting Associate Director for Offshore Minerals Management.
[FR Doc. E7-4876 Filed 3-16-07; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-MR-P