Tips for safe oil and gas drilling

By understanding OSHA guidelines and state laws, people can prevent injuries from occurring on or around oil and gas drilling operations.

Working in the oil and gas industry in Ohio comes with its fair share of dangers. Workers must deal with the risk of explosions, the dangers of working in confined spaces and they must exercise care when working on tall structures. The unique set of safety concerns that oil and gas workers face is addressed by OSHA and the state legislature, both of which provide some guidelines that, if followed, will reduce the risk of injury involved with drilling operations.

Safety in confined spaces

An important way to maximize safety in these areas is the restriction of who is and is not allowed to enter. A permit is required for anybody to enter a confined space that is considered to contain a severe atmospheric hazard. Workers should always be aware of the presence of hazardous chemicals or flammable gases, and take the appropriate precautions. Confined spaces commonly encountered in a drilling operation include sand storage areas, reserve pits, mud pits and petroleum storage tanks.

Slip and fall prevention

There are a number of documents provided by OSHA that apply specifically to preventing workers from slipping and falling. This fall protection knowledge is required for anybody working on elevated equipment such as a drilling platform or mast. Before accessing a highly elevated area, it should be ascertained that it is equipped in such a way as to be fully in compliance with OSHA safety protocols.

Avoiding fires and explosions

An important thing for every worker to keep in mind is that there is a risk of explosion whenever frictional heat, hot surfaces, welding tools, cigarettes, lightning, open flames, electrical energy sources, static or any other ignition source is present around a flammable gas. As such, it is important to keep these sources separated from any hydrogen sulfide, vapors, well gases or other flammable gases.

Where a drill should be built

In addition to the safe practices that workers can follow, it is also important that every drilling platform be built in accordance with state law. For instance, a new well has to be built within the parcel of land that was designated as a drilling area. Also, if the permission of a landowner is not obtained, a well may not be built within 150 feet of that person's land.

Anybody in Ohio who has been injured in a drilling-related accident may be able to obtain financial compensation in order to help them deal with their pain and suffering and the expensive costs of getting medical attention. An attorney in the local area who practices personal injury law may be able to advise an effective way to proceed in such cases.