Oil terminals’ safety is no laughing matter. If an accident happens, it will have wide effect on both people, nature, animals and economy in a vast area. This makes oil terminals’ asset integrity management an important and complex task.

Many forces impact oil jetties

Oil jetties are under lots of stress. A daily example are the natural forces like salty seawater and strong wind and waves. One of the most common observations we make are the concrete damage done by salt stress: the salt from the sea water builds up in the structures and accelerates corrosion.

Mechanical stress is also present in forms of big vessels hitting the jetties. Oil tankers have a large mass, and if the weather conditions make it more difficult to steer, they may damage the jetty structures in a short time, or the damage may form over a long time causing a sudden and unexpected break.

Sediment shifts in the seabed are also interesting and important things for oil terminal’s asset managers to know. It can cause empty spaces around the pipelines in one place, and sediment piling up in another can cause the tankers to run aground.


Infograph: Waves and wind, salt stress, mechanical stess


Need for monitoring brings need for inspections

The older the jetty structure is, the more important it is to inspect the underwater structures regularly. Especially bent piles are a risk and prone to contact with the vessels.

Not everything can lay upon employee’s visual observation. That is why oil terminals and jetties need effective and reputable inspections to help monitoring. VRT is a certified and experienced surveyor of all underwater structures. Because any interruptions and disturbance can have a big financial impact, our surveys don’t cause any downtime.

Oil jetties typically have complex pile structures carrying it. They are very slow and expensive to survey by diving alone. VRT gets a good overview of all the structures, even the vertical piles, with our agile boat. With multibeam sonar and laser scanning technologies we gather detailed and high-quality data quickly and cost-efficiently. If further inspections are required, you know exactly where to send the divers to.

3D visualization of underwater data

Don’t just take our word for it, read also what others have said!

Read an example of oil terminal’s underwater survey from our Falmouth Petroleum’s case story!

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Karri Kolehmainen & Ville Mäkeläinen

Karri Koistinen

+358 40 0604927




Ville Mäkeläinen

+358 44 513 2222



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