Presentation on theme: "Drilling Contractor Safety"— Presentation transcript:
1 Drilling Contractor Safety Understanding the hazards associated with rod separation
2 It could have been much worse An IncidentNZ September two drilling contractors were using pipe wrenches to separate drill rods that were extremely tight.During this process, the hydraulic rotation of the drill string was accidentally activatedBoth men were hit by the handle of a pipe wrench and knocked to the ground.Both men suffered severe bruising.It could have been much worse
3 What Went Wrong?Mechanical tools for rod separation were available but were not usedThe drillers decided to separate the rods using manual toolsThe hydraulic controls were not protected from inadvertent operationHydraulic rotation was accidentally applied
4 The plan was to break this sub section Away from this sectionIn this directionAnd rotating this section with another wrenchBy holding this section with one pipe wrench
5 With the wrench in place the drill is rotated slowly anti-clockwise to apply tension to the wrench by bringing the handle of the wrench against the mast of the rig
6 Drill Rig (Plan)Drill string rotation is stopped but hydraulic power remainsDrillers attach pipe wrench to secure one section of the drill stringDrillers work in close proximity to drill stringRotation is accidentally applied
7 Common practice Driller holds pipe wrench in place Drill continues to rotate and unscrew under powerHigh speed rotation is applied
8 Danger Zone Drill String Danger Zone while drilling Add a pipe wrench and area increases significanltyDrillers work in close proximity to drill string
9 A rotating pipe wrench – Easily makes contact with anyone near the controls. Maximum speed. ~1,000rpm
10 Why is this a major issue? The combination of manual tools with hydraulic rotation identified as a major contributing factorThe practice is common and widespreadThere is an alarming history of similar incidents from a number of industries where drill rigs are usedThe following examples did not occur on URS projects
11 This is not the first time #1 Queensland – Chest Injury (Non URS)Two large pipe wrenches were used in conjunction with a lever block to disassemble a hammer bit on a drill rig string. The handle of the wrench broke striking the drilling operator in the chest.
12 This is not the first time #2 Western Australia – Chest Injury (Non URS)A driller was struck in the chest by the handle of a pipe wrench when rotation was released following torguing up of a joint.
13 This is not the first time #3 NSW – Head injury (Non URS)Two field technicians were hit on the head by a drill rod which was being used as a pipe wrench extension handle to break drill rods
14 This is not the first time #4 Western Australia – Broken Legs (Non URS)A driller received two broken legs when rotation was applied to the drill rods with a pipe wrench attached
15 This is not the first time #5 Western Australia – Abdominal Injury (Non URS)A driller received serious injuries to the abdomen when hit with the handle of a pipe wrench
16 This is not the first time #6 Pennsylvania USA – Broken Ribs (Non URS)A drillers is hit in the chest with the handle of a pipe wrench which was attached to a drill string. The drill was rotated at full speed instead of being inched. The driller was air lifted to hospital with chest injuries.
17 What can be done?Where practicable, use mechanical means of drill rod separation (only) at all timesWhere mechanical methods of rod separation are not suitable or available, eliminate the combination of manual tools with powered rotation.Whenever manual pipe wrenches or hand tools are used to fit or remove drill rods, this must only be undertaken once the rotational power of the drill string is isolated, de-energized or positively disengaged such that intentional or accidental rotation of the drill string while pipe wrenches or tools are attached is not possible
18 What is mechanical means of drill rod separation?