Oil and Gas Well Drilling and Servicing eTool
The oil and gas industry employs hundreds of thousands of people and is a vital component of the national economy. Worker safety and health are important to this industry. This eTool* identifies common hazards and possible solutions to reduce incidents that could lead to injuries or fatalities.
Each drilling and servicing company has its own safety program. This eTool is not a replacement for those programs nor does it establish any industry consensus standards (industry disclaimer). Rather, it can be used as a resource in identifying workplace hazards and providing possible solutions that may be relevant to their safety programs. This eTool does not purport to identify all hazards and solutions. This eTool focuses on land based operations.
Worker safety awareness is necessary for injury prevention during all phases of drilling and servicing operations. Procedures and processes will include safety meetings, Job Safety Analyses, and general and task-specific training. At the end of each section, resources are identified that provide more details for establishing safe work practices and procedures.
A key element of any effective safety program is the Job Safety Analysis (JSA). This eTool may be useful in preparing JSAs for your worksite.
Additional Industry References
There are numerous references to API, AESC, and IADC publications, industry safety handbooks, safety programs, training facilities and programs, under the heading of "Additional Information," which can provide more complete and detailed information.
How do I find out about employer responsibilities and workers' rights?
Workers have a right to a safe workplace. The law requires employers to provide their employees with safe and healthful workplaces. The OSHA law also prohibits employers from retaliating against employees for exercising their rights under the law (including the right to raise a health and safety concern or report an injury). For more information see www.whistleblowers.gov or Workers' rights under the OSH Act.
OSHA can help answer questions or concerns from employers and workers. To reach your regional or area OSHA office, go to the OSHA Offices by State webpage or call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742).
Small business employers may contact OSHA's free and confidential On-Site Consultation program to help determine whether there are hazards at their worksites and work with OSHA on correcting any identified hazards. Consultants in this program from state agencies or universities work with employers to identify workplace hazards, provide advice on compliance with OSHA standards, and assist in establishing injury and illness prevention programs. On-Site Consultation services are separate from enforcement activities and do not result in penalties or citations. To contact OSHA's free consultation service, go to OSHA's On-Site Consultation web page or call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742) and press number 4.
Workers may file a complaint to have OSHA inspect their workplace if they believe that their employer is not following OSHA standards or that there are serious hazards. Workers can file a complaint with OSHA by calling 1-800-321-OSHA (6742), online via eComplaint Form, or by printing the complaint form and mailing or faxing it to the local OSHA area office. Complaints that are signed by a worker are more likely to result in an inspection.
If you think your job is unsafe or if you have questions, contact OSHA at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742). Your contact will be kept confidential. We can help. For other valuable worker protection information, such as Workers' Rights, Employer Responsibilities, and other services OSHA offers, visit OSHA's Workers' page.
Oil and Gas eTool Industry Disclaimer
Although the etool was developed as a joint project with the industry, it is not to be construed as an industry consensus standard as indicated in the following disclaimer.
"Nothing contained herein shall be construed to establish an industry-accepted standard of drilling or energy servicing safe operating procedures. No suggested method, practice, precaution or program set forth in this guide should be relied upon to establish a legal standard of conduct or a legal duty, the violation of which would constitute culpability of any degree in any legal proceeding.
Information and/or data provided is for informational assistance only and should not be utilized or considered as a comprehensive safety and health program or accepted industry standard."
*eTools are stand-alone, interactive, highly illustrated web-based training tools on occupational safety and health topics. Some use expert system modules, which enable users to answer questions and receive reliable advice on how OSHA regulations apply to their work site. Some provide guidance information for developing a comprehensive safety and health program and include other recommended practices that often go beyond specific OSHA requirements. As indicated in the disclaimer, eTools do not create new OSHA requirements.