Statutory inspections (and other health and safety inspections) are a crucial activity to ensure the ongoing safe operation of wind farm infrastructure and systems, and to fulfil statutory obligations to inspect safety-critical systems on a regular basis.

What it costs

About £200,000 per annum for a 450 MW floating offshore wind farm.

Who supplies them

Bureau Veritas, DNV-GL, SGS and TÜV SÜD.

Key facts

Safety-critical items are subject to a statutory inspection regime, where there are legal requirements including recommended inspection frequencies and method of inspection. Inspections are carried out by qualified personnel, either as part of the primary turbine maintenance works or by a team of independent inspectors. Inspection frequencies are six-monthly or annual, depending on the equipment. If a scheduled inspection has not been carried out then technicians are not allowed to use the affected equipment, which may stop maintenance and repair activities from being carried out.

Most owners train their own technicians for these roles as they are frequent but require minimal time. Where there is a requirement for periodic statutory inspections and certification, such as for fall arrest systems, independent certifiers provide these services.

Owners seek to perform inspections prior to other planned work being carried out in the summer months to minimise the likelihood of weather delays and ensure equipment remains certified for use.

Safety-critical devices and equipment that require statutory inspections include:

  • Anchor points
  • Boat landing and ladders
  • Davit cranes
  • External gates and railings and floor gratings
  • External evacuation and rescue equipment
  • Fall arrest systems
  • Firefighting equipment and fire prevention equipment
  • First aid supplies & equipment
  • Navigation aids and aviation lighting
  • Pressure systems
  • Turbine cranes

Guide to a Floating Offshore Wind Farm