Rick Keen - Unsung Safety Hero


By: Issac Dantin

Compliance Specialist Rick Keen has been part of the Danos safety team since 2003. In his role of compliance specialist, he has opportunities to promote safety and Danos on a big stage through the Center of Offshore Safety (COS). Often, Rick is the only contractor representative in many discussions and is also a key speaker via webinars. The COS is part of the American Petroleum Institute. It was formed nine years ago to promote safety in the oil & gas industry. The efforts of COS are focused primarily into four pillars:

  1. SEMS audits and certificates
  2. Data collection
  3. Analysis and reporting
  4. Good practice development and sharing industry knowledge

Each year operating procedures and safe work practices identifies process safety and lifting activities that are significant contributors in safety incidents. The 2017 COS Board agreed and sent out an announcement for participants to form a work group tasked to produce the Guidance for Developing and Managing Procedures. The challenge was accepted by Danos' own Rick Keen, CSP, OHST, who volunteered his knowledge and many years of experience working in and supporting the offshore oil and natural gas industry.

Rick joined this work group compiled of over 35 representatives including operators, contractors, regulatory personnel and academics to assist in the development. For three years Rick attended regular meetings held in Houston or participated via Skype and telephone conference meetings from the Danos Lafayette office. During the meetings, the group came together to review literature on procedure development, establish terms of reference, develop a flow chart and draft a document to build from learnings. The guidance document developed contains important information primarily composed of 13 expectations and guidelines. Rick also served as a speaker for the COS Webinar: Guidance for Developing and Managing Procedures.

Rick enjoyed interacting with members of the group and representing Danos in this effort. During the development of the document, he most recalls the research involved and best practice sharing. A key takeaway for Rick is the importance of the user in association with the coordinator and the subject matter expert. This equal relationship is important. Otherwise, what good is a procedure that doesn't work?

When asked what inspires him to be so passionate at what he does, Rick said: “I learned about Colonel Rick Rescorla, who retired to a life as corporate security chief for Morgan Stanley at the World Trade Center. Briefly, he anticipated the first bombing down to the source of the attack. He wanted out of the World Trade Center. He wrote procedures, trained and drilled the employees frequently and routinely to evacuate in an orderly manner. His preparedness paid off during the tragedy of 9/11. He died going back up the South Tower after 100% of his employees successfully evacuated. He wrote procedures that had to work. I bought his book and enjoy sharing it with people.”


Issac DantinIssac began his career at Danos in 1996 as a roustabout at the Leeville shorebase and worked his way to shorebase supervisor. He was named Field Employee of the Year in 2007 and was later hired on by Chevron. He returned to Danos in 2010 and currently serves as safety director.


Write Your Comment

Captcha Image