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Reducing costs at the expense of safety is a dangerous strategy

Fabiana Teixeira, Business Development Manager for South America at ScanTech Offshore, discusses the business challenges facing the LATAM (Latin America) region.

The South American oil and gas market is in a time of flux but one thing is common across all countries – falling prices.

scantech logoThere are great opportunities on the horizon in Argentina, Mexico, The Falklands, Columbia, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, but the challenging political and economical climate in these territories mean that clients are feeling the pressure to keep costs under control.

As a partner, we work together with our customers to make the most of a price war that has become increasingly competitive. For example, our best selling products in this region are our range of air compressors and steam generators, as recooling is the main challenge facing our customers. Several of our customers have asked for discounts until the oil price rises again and, wherever we can, we’re working with them to find a solution in these challenging times.

To do this, we approach all our solutions holistically. By investing in our solutions, overall your costs are lowered, as your staff and assets are better protected in the long run. And because we pride ourselves on giving our customers the fastest possible response times, in 2012 we added to our global offering by setting up a South American ScanTech base site in Brazil.

Brazil was a huge step for us and was primarily set up because one of our customers needed the local support and equipment in country for its contracts. Setting up the base took time and cost but we saw this as a worthwhile investment in order to be able to offer a faster response with reliable, certified equipment and competent personnel.

Because of this strategy of having a local base in the LATAM region, we can work more efficiently around often complicated bureaucracy with licencing and niche requirements that vary from place to place, as well as helping customers with employee support in those regions.”

And our support doesn’t stop there. It has now expanded to include service, storage (ScanTech has more than 50 units on site in Brazil) and maintenance. We can offer a rapid response to customer issues, with a 2-3 day turnaround of picking up equipment, repairing, testing and returning it to site – all of which leads to cost savings for our clients.

But while cost reduction is all very well, we are adamant that our customers should never compromise on safety when times are tough.

Both ranges of our Zone II rated steam generators and high volume air compressors are at the cutting-edge of performance, reliability and safety, making them the safest option for explosion mitigation on and offshore.

In addition, because we have a large number of units that are contracted out, our job is also to make sure that they are routinely maintained so they are ready to go as soon as they are needed.

As part of this, we maintain full compliance with the NR13 Regulatory Standard, one of the many USPs that sets our Brazil base apart from others by offering complete local support.

This Regulatory Standard sets the minimum requirements for managing the structural integrity of steam boilers, pressure vessels and their interconnection pipes in relation to their installation, inspection, operation and maintenance, as well as overseeing health and safety of the workers involved.

All safety inspections are performed under the technical responsibility of Rodrigo Gonçalves, our qualified professional NR13 specialist engineer. It is his role to ensure that ScanTech Brazil is compliant with the requirements of NR13.
 
This means that all boilers have to meet a set of strict pressure safety criteria and have an indelible identification plate in an easily accessible and clearly visible place as well as up-to-date documents including inspection reports, log books, calibration certificates and safety records in all the establishments where they are installed.

We also ensure that our boiler operators have a certificate of Safety Training in Boiler Operation and proof of practical traineeship on the boilers which they will be operating, and we continue their professional development with in-house training, and technical and safety updates.

All of this means that with a little investment upfront, our customers can get on with the job in hand, safe in the knowledge that their equipment is properly maintained and correctly licensed, and all personnel are operating safely and in accordance with regulatory requirements.

It may sound like a tall order, but it’s all in a day’s work for our LATAM teams.

For further information on ScanTech Offshore’s offering visit www.scantechoffshore.com