About STOW 

What is STOW

Benefits of STOW

Who needs Certification

Risk levels for Certification

   

  
 

What is STOW

Safe TO Work (STOW) is a certification programme for contractors’ HSE management systems.

The Energy Chamber started the STOW programme in 2004 after hearing the complaints from its members in the energy service sector, who were experiencing challenges in meeting the range of health, safety and environmental (HSE) requirements among the major oil and gas operating companies. This made it difficult to prequalify for work and fully explore business opportunities in Trinidad and Tobago’s leading industry.

At the time, each upstream and downstream operating company managed contractor safety through their own company specific HSE requirements, usually adopted from the parent company abroad. While this approach worked for the operating company, it stifled the attempts of local contractors to offer their services to more than one operating company at any given time, mainly due to the cost factor for meeting the different requirements.

In 2005, the Energy Chamber developed the STOW project proposal identifying the need for consensus on the HSE requirements to prequalify service contractors across Trinidad and Tobago’s energy industry. The Energy Chamber approached the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) for funding and initially received funds to conduct a mini project to set the parameters and get consensus among stakeholders for the STOW project.

In April 2006, the Energy Chamber signed an agreements with the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) to implement the project ‘Improving Health, Safety and Environmental Standards in the Energy Sector’ using grand funds from the IADB’s Multilateral Investment Fund. The project is commonly referred to as Safe TO Work in Trinidad & Tobago (STOW-TT), STOW for short.

STOW Project Components

STOW started off as a project funded by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). The project consisted of four components:

Component I: Creation of the STOW HSE Minimum Requirements, STOW HSE Minimum Requirements Contractor Guidance Manual and the process to certify contractors to the STOW HSE Minimum Requirements.

Component II: Training and authorization of HSE Professionals to work as Independent Assessors. Independent Assessors assess the level of conformance of contractor’s HSE management systems to the STOW HSE Minimum Requirements.

Component III: Provide technical – assign Assessors to work with companies - and financial resources for a pilot group of companies to become STOW certified.

Component IV: Promotion of the STOW project and dissemination of information

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Benefits of STOW

The STOW requirements were created to provide a uniform way across the industry, of identifying and prequalifying contractors who operate according to superior HSE principles. 

The benefits of STOW include:

    -       The greatest and most obvious benefit that STOW brings is the increased opportunity for contractors to get more work in the energy sector.  The ability of contractors to demonstrate that they govern their business according to industry best practices gives the major upstream and downstream operating companies confidence that the inherent risk in the industry will be effectively managed. 

    -       Contractors will no longer have to meet the HSE requirements of each individual operating company, a situation which stifled contractors’ attempts at offering energy services to more than one client at any given time, mainly due to the cost factor for meeting the different requirements. 

    -       The upstream and downstream operating companies have agreed that any energy service contractor that is certified to the STOW minimum HSE Requirements will not be excluded from bidding for work where that exclusion is linked to HSE requirements for the work.

    -       Reduction in duplication of effort each time a contractor has to tender for jobs. Once certified to the STOW minimum HSE requirements, contractors will be able to only submit a copy of their valid STOW certificate of compliance with the tender documents.  The financial and opportunity cost associated with the STOW process is also considerably lower than the old tender process.

    -       At the lowest level, contractors are assured that the legislative requirements of the Trinidad & Tobago Occupational Safety and Health Act (TTOSHA) are met, while at the highest level, all voluntary industry requirements will be met or exceeded.  

    -       The improved HSE management systems through the STOW programme results in a reduction in incidents/ accidents, downtime and improves efficiency in business operations. 

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Who needs certification?

Any contractor providing services to the energy sector needs to be certified.

Contracting companies are certified according to the level of risk they pose to the major oil and gas operating companies while providing the service. Contractors are certified at the low risk, medium risk or high risk level.

If an operator company considers that a the risk associate with the service of a contractor is insignificant to their operations, the operator company may decide that for that contractor, no certification is required (NCR).  

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Risk levels for certification

Contracting companies are certified according to the level of risk they pose to the major oil and gas operating companies while providing the service. Contractors are certified at the low risk, medium risk or high risk level.

High Risk Certification

High risk operations are defined as those that the operator company considers to present significant risk of significant injury, damage to equipment or damage to the environment, where the potential frequency of occurrence and type of harm that may occur makes the risk realisation as unacceptable.

Low Risk Certification

Low risk operation are defined as those that the operator considers to present limited risk of injury, damage to equipment or damage to the environment

No Certification Required

An operating company may consider relevant low risk contractors to bring such insignificant risk to their operations, that the time and expense to undertake to become and maintain STOW certification outweighs the need for certification.

For more information on the levels of risk please review the STOW HSE Requirements Administration Manual available on this website.

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UPDATES:

Surveillance Audits

Effective Sept 1st 2017 Surveillance Audits will be included in the contracts for STOW audits.......Read more

Now available:
- STOW Clinic (call for an appointment)
- Feedback form on the STOW website
- HSE lessons learnt website at 
  http://energynow.tt/hse-lessons-learned/.

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