Saipem Confirms Incident on Castorone Pipelayer at Scarborough Gas Project

Saipem's Castorone vessel (Credit: Saipem)
Saipem's Castorone vessel (Credit: Saipem)

Italian offshore services company Saipem has reported an incident on its flagship Castorone vessel during a pipelaying operation at Woodside’s Scarborough gas field offshore Australia.

Saipem has confirmed that early on the morning of January 30 an incident occurred on the Castorone pipelay vessel off the waters of Australia during normal pipelaying operations.

According to the company, the incident did not cause injuries to personnel, and the Castorone pipe laying vessel did not sustain any major damages.

However, localized damage to the trunkline was sustained which will be remediated.

"A localized damage to the pipeline during installation is an event that can happen and as such Saipem has approved procedures in place and resources available for interventions and repairs.

"Initial assessments show that the cause of the accident could be an anomaly in the software under investigation," Saipem said in a statement issued on January 31, 2024.

The Scarborough gas resource is located in the Carnarvon Basin, offshore Western Australia, and is being developed through new offshore facilities connected by an approximately 430 km export trunkline with a 36”/32” diameter to a second LNG train (Pluto Train 2) at the existing Pluto LNG onshore facility.

The first cargo is expected to be delivered in 2026.

The work assigned to Saipem is relevant to coating, transportation and installation of the trunkline, at a maximum water depth of 1,400 meters, including the fabrication and installation of the line structures and of the pipeline end termination in 950-meter water depth.

The pipe laying work on the project has now been halted by Woodshie, according to the Australian media, following the incident on Saipem’s Castorone vessel, reportedly the second to occur this January.

Questions have been raised on health and safety standards for the workers on the vessel at Scarborough, and the offshore safety regulator NOPSEMA has been notified about both incidents, which is currently investigating the matter, the Australian media have reported.


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