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 Fire safety in the oil and gas sector is a critical issue that cannot be taken lightly

AdobeStock 364564712Fire in an oil and gas site can be triggered by anything from flammable vapours and naturally occurring gases to electrical equipment. (Image Source: Adobe Stock)

Sustainable cable maintenance company, FS, has shed some light on the best approaches in this regard:

What are the main fire hazards in the oil and gas industry?

Fire safety needs special attention on an oil and gas site.There is a wide variety of fire hazards on an average oil and gas site, including: 

 •Flammable vapours from oil, gas and their by-products

 •Naturally occurring gases (benzene, methane, hydrogen sulphide, etc.)

 •Mineral spirits and other cleaning chemicals

 •Compressors, heater treaters and other oil and gas-producing equipment

 •Electrical equipment

Tell us about your fire suppression solutions for the oil and gas sector.

Our company is specialising in fire protection, repair and life extension of electrical cables. Our cable coating systems (FS1 and FS5) are tested fire resistant up to 1100 Celsius (temperature of a hydrocarbon fire) and are also UV, water, seawater, oil, mud and chemicals resistant.

During a fire, the coating expands and protects the cables from fire damage and also prevents the fire from spreading via the cable trays. FS-coated cables function during a fire, and if the fire is ceased within a reasonable time, there will be no need for cable replacement.

In a fire situation, our systems prevent:

 • Ignition of the cable insulation.

 • Release of toxic fumes from the cable insulation.

 • Release of poisonous gas (HCL) from the cable insulation.

 • The cable tray from melting and collapsing.

We can also repair and restore already damaged or aging cables. Our solution can be hugely cost saving compared to replacing cables with new ones and we are by that also contributing to lower emissions and CO2 footprint. 

What new products have the company launched or are looking to launch? What different or exclusive features do they offer?

Besides our coating systems, FS offers fire protection solutions for penetrations.

But our main focus right now is on sustainability. Our commitment to the environment is documented through our ISO14001 environmental management system certification. Industries have to understand that there is an alternative to unsustainable and expensive cable replacement whenever cables are ageing, degrading, cracked, burnt or UV affected. 

How is the market demand for your products and solutions in the Middle East and Africa?

Middle East has been a leading business area for FS for more than 20 years. We have a permanent office based in UAE to cover the region. Activity slowed down there in 2020 and 2021 during Covid restrictions, but it is gaining pace again this year, led by the oil & gas industry in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE and Bahrein.

Africa is a more recent development for us, but demand for cable fire protection and life extension there is increasing, and so are our efforts to develop a network and operate there. So far, most of our projects on the continent have been in Nigeria, South Africa, Angola, Egypt and Libya and we have agents representing FS in South Africa, Kenya and Egypt. We are currently also having talks with oil & gas majors in other parts of Western Africa.