BP Unveils Safety Shake-up

The new Safety & Operational Risk function will have authority to intervene in all aspects of BP's technical activities.

BP will create a powerful safety division in a major shake-up after the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster, the British energy giant said on Sept. 29 as it prepares for life under new chief executive Bob Dudley.

The company said that it would also restructure its upstream division into three separate units -- exploration, development and production -- and review how it manages third-party contractors.

And the group will launch a separate assessment of how it motivates its staff, in trying to improve safety and risk management.

"These are the first and most urgent steps in a program I am putting in place to rebuild trust in BP -- the trust of our customers, of governments, of our employees and of the world at large," Dudley said. "That trust is vital to the restoration of shareholder value which has been so adversely affected by recent events. The changes are in areas where I believe we most clearly need to act, with safety and risk management our most urgent priority."

"The decision to establish the new (safety) function follows the Deepwater Horizon accident in the Gulf of Mexico and BP's investigation into the disaster," the group said. "The Safety & Operational Risk function will have authority to intervene in all aspects of BP's technical activities."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2010

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