Michael Tolmie

OHS Regulatory Specialist (Occupational Hygiene), NOPSEMA

Michael Tolmie is an OHS Regulatory Specialist (Occupational Hygiene) in the Safety and Integrity Division of the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA). With 20 years of professional experience in regulation and compliance in the resources industry, Michael has assessed safety cases and performed inspections on offshore production platforms, drilling rigs, FPSOs, and pipe-laying vessels, examining technical controls for the prevention and mitigation of health hazards and major accident events. Michael is a Certified Occupational Hygienist and has formal tertiary qualifications in Chemistry and Occupational Hygiene. He is also a Member of the Australian Institute of Occupational Hygienists (AIOH). Prior to joining NOPSEMA, Michael spent many years with Saudi Aramco and Coffey, allowing Michael to develop specialist technical skills in the fields of occupational health, regulatory compliance and managing risk in major hazard industries.


While inspecting an offshore drilling rig operating on the North West Shelf off the coast of Western Australia, inspectors observed uncontrolled airborne hazardous chemicals during chemical mixing at the sack room manual hopper. The airborne, uncontrolled chemical mixture presented an occupational health risk to members of the workforce. The inspection, including discussions with the workforce regarding the effectiveness of the implemented safety management system and associated controls, found the risk of exposure to hazardous chemicals was not managed to as low as reasonably practicable. Enforcement action was taken firstly to address the immediate threat to the health and safety of workers by ensuring the workforce was provided with suitable respiratory protection, and secondly, to implement a series of controls at the source to reduce the risk of exposure to members of the workforce to as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP).

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Tuesday 1st Dec Day 2

Uncontrolled airborne chemicals in sack room: A Case Study