A TikTok video showing an offshore worker lighting a flare on a North Sea installation has racked up hundred of thousands of views.
The video posted on June 6 by user Benjamin Lunde shows a crew member fire a flare over the stack to start the gas-burning process.
In true TikTok style, the event is synced to the track ‘Blood // Water’ by Canadian-American singer grandson.
Comments suggest the video may have been filmed at the processing facilities on Equinor’s Sleipner A installation.
At the time of writing the video had racked up nearly 800,000 views on the popular social networking site.
As well as many commenters impressed by the footage, others asked why the gas was being burned – particularly when commodity prices are high.
Flaring is a controlled process used to burn off excess or waste gases from the hydrocarbon production process, though in the North Sea this is usually only in certain circumstances such as the start-up of new wells, or to ensure safety.
Flaring in the UK North Sea fell to record lows last year, following a concerted effort by regulators and the industry to reduce its operational emissions.
As for those questioning why a flare gun is used to ignite the stack, this practice is also fairly common, as Step Change in Safety executive director Steve Rae explained to Energy voice.
“The igniting of flares using flare guns is routine however does happen on occasion under very well controlled conditions despite the ‘wild west’ look in the TikTok video,” he said.
“This is required when the installed flare ignition system, at the tip of these flares, becomes non operations which can be caused by excessive heat damage. This is when these flare guns would be used to reignite.”
Mr Rae said the a crew member on the installation would also hold necessary certifications to hold the firearm and use it under controlled conditions.
The lighting operation too would be subject to work controls such as risk assessment, hot work permit, and restricted access barriers, he added.