Abstract This study suggests relevant finite element (FE) formulations for the structural analysis of offshore blast walls subjected to blast loadings due to hydrocarbon explosions. The present blast wall model adopted from HSE (2003) consists of a corrugated panel and supporting members, and was modelled with shell, thick-shell, and solid element combinations in LS-DYNA, an explicit finite element analysis (FEA) solver. Stainless and mild steels were employed as materials for the blast wall model, with consideration of strain rate effect throughout ten (10) pulse pressure load regimes. The obtained FEA results were validated by experimental data from HSE (2003) with decent agreement. In the present study, recommended FE formulations with additional hourglass control functions were widely discussed from the perspectives of solution accuracy and computational cost based on a statistical approach. The obtained outcomes could be used for the structural analysis and design of offshore blast walls in the estimations of maximum and permanent deformations under blast loadings.