Hundreds Scots oil workers had their journeys home cancelled due to bad weather before Christmas. They feared they would have to spend Christmas on an oil rig. Sots offshore workers raised concerns over being stranded in the North Sea over Christmas after their company allegedly cancelled flights (Aberdeen Live). The officials have caused fear among the workers and damaged their mental health.
Scottish oil workers were protesting
As Daily Record (20 DEC 2022) says, Scots oil workers feared being stranded on rigs this Christmas after a firm cancelled flights. A whistleblower told the Daily Record that tensions were rising among Scots oil workers in Denmark. An oil firm allegedly refused to reschedule flights cancelled due to bad weather. Thus hundreds of offshore workers faced being stranded on rigs this Christmas. Around 200 Scots in the North Sea, near Denmark, feared they would spend Christmas hundreds of miles from home. They threatened to protest. They warned they would stay in their cabins and refuse to work unless the officials organized replacement helicopters.
A very important point is the workers’ mental health. According to Daily Record, some workers struggled with their mental health. Thus they were also worried violence could break out. A worker said a week ago, an incident on an oil rig in Qatar left a worker dead and another injured. He added that the incident is also playing on their minds.
Scots oil workers get home for Christmas
Three days late, Daily Record (22 DEC 2022) reported that Scots oil workers would get home for Christmas. French firm Total Energies said extra helicopters and boats were being put on to get stranded employees back to the UK after we raised workers’ concerns with the company. Thus the officials told the workers that they would get home to their loved ones for Christmas.
As stated above, hundreds of workers were worried they would have to spend the entire festive period on the rigs. The oil workers were employed in the North Sea near Denmark. One told Daily Record that French firm Total Energies had cancelled scheduled flights due to bad weather. Then it refused to organize replacement transport. The staff threatened to stage protests if the authorities did not resolve the situation. Then the Record raised the issue, and the company arranged to get the affected Scots home. The whistleblower thanked Daily Record for intervening and helping to resolve the issue.
Whistleblowers ask not to be identified
The whistleblowers asked not to be identified because they feared losing their job. Daily Record (20 DEC 2022) says that a whistleblower complained about the conditions. He told the Daily Record that French oil firm Total Energies employees are unhappy with the situation. He said that after the recent bad weather, we have over 600 international contractors stranded on various oil rigs. He added that around 200 of them are from Scotland. The worker asked not to be identified.
According to Daily Record (22 DEC 2022), a source said: “It’s smashing news. The story lit a fire below them, and they ordered more choppers. The source asked not to be identified over fears it would affect his employment.
Damages to workers’ mental health
As Edinburgh Live says, a worker was killed and another injured in an attack on board a rig in Qatar. This event shocked the oil and gas industry. Christopher Begley, of Coat Bridge, Lanarkshire, was attacked and was sent back to Scotland to recover. His colleague, Robert Robson of Tyne and Wear, was killed. Aberdeen man Scott Forrest was later arrested in connection with the incident. After this incident, the Denmark-based workers fear violence could also break out on their rig as tensions rise.
One worker said, “There’s a real worry there could be a violent incident with the number of guys under serious stress. As you would expect, all the lads have all been talking about the situation.” As Human Rights Careers says, The Guardian reported the results of a survey in 2015. The report noted that 79% of the 754 aid workers reported suffering from mental illness. Of those, 93% said that the condition was work-related. Human rights workers are particularly vulnerable to burnout. Burnout is a particular type of stress, and it isn’t simply a result of overwork. Burnout is the result of working in a stressful or demanding environment.
Authorities are responsible
It says in POST US ZERO that around 300 staff could not leave the rigs off the coast of Denmark. The problem was terrible weather. Many of the workers were Scottish. French company Total Energies said it could not compromise employee safety by flying under these conditions. The company denied reports that it was refusing to reschedule flights.
Rescheduling flights for transporting the staff is undoubtedly the workers’ right. A point of concern is that the authorities are responsible for what they have caused. They have caused severe stress and burnout for oil workers, including Scots oil workers.
In Open Global Rights, workers’ rights are human rights
Hundreds of employees in the North Sea feared that they would have to spend December 25 at work. Their journey home was said to be cancelled due to bad weather. Record reports noted that the workers’ employer scrapped the flights and failed to reschedule them. Thus the workers threatened to protest unless new helicopters were organized (Edinburgh Live). As it says in Sequin, French firm Total Energies said extra helicopters and boats were being put on to get the stranded employees back to the UK.
The shock and stress the officials caused for the workers are of serious concern. As it says in Open Global Rights, workers’ rights are human rights. We have a moral and legal obligation to protect them. To sum up, the oil company in North See must be accountable for threatening the workers’ mental health.