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Job Safety Analysis (JSA)
Drilling >> Maintenenance Activities

Proper maintenance prevents premature equipment failure, which may cause injuries or fatalities. Drilling equipment is subjected to stress and vibration during operations. Maintenance is a necessary and ongoing activity on the drilling site.

Maintenance activities include maintaining the:
Fig. 1. Welding
Fig. 1. Welding


Back to TopRig Floor
Fig. 2. Engines, compound, and drawworks: Schematic drawing of three diesel engines (lower right) with sprockets, chains (lower left) and transmission chains (above) adjacent to the automatic cathead and drawworks (top). The location of the brakes (top center), auxiliary brakes (top left) , drum (top center), rotary table (top left), and friction cathead is indicated relative to the driller's position (upper right) in the diagram. The belt drive (lower left) to the mud pumps is also indicated in the diagram.
Fig. 2. Engines, compound, and drawworks

Maintenance activities include inspecting, adjusting, and servicing on equipment such as drawworks, rotary, catheads, tongs, air hoists, and wire rope.


Potential Hazards:
  • Slips, trips, and falls.
Possible Solutions:
  • Wear personal protective equipment (such as hard hats, work gloves, safety shoes, and eye protection).

  • Be aware of the slipping and falling hazards when performing maintenance on the drilling floor.

  • Keep all work areas clean and clear of oil, tools, and debris.

  • Use non-skid surfaces where appropriate.
Potential Hazards:
  • Being caught in chains or other moving equipment.

  • Getting fingers and hands pinched in machine guards or covers.

  • Receiving sprains and strains.
Possible Solutions:
  • Wear personal protective equipment (such as hard hats, work gloves, safety shoes, and eye protection).

  • Use proper lockout/tagout procedures. [29 CFR 1910.147]

  • Seek assistance when moving awkward and heavy guards and covers.

  • Maintain all machinery free of leaks by regular preventive maintenance and repairing when necessary.



Back to TopDrilling Line Maintenance
Fig. 3. Drilling line
Fig. 3. Drilling line

The drilling line is the steel wire rope reeved through the crown block and traveling block. It must be inspected, slipped and cut regularly.


Potential Hazards:
  • Receiving injuries to face and eyes from flying chips of metal when slipping and cutting the line.

  • Being caught in moving equipment.

  • Slips, trips, and falls.

  • Being struck by drilling line.
Possible Solutions:
  • Use proper lockout/tagout procedures. [29 CFR 1910.147]

  • Wear proper personnel protective equipment when cutting line.

  • Attach a red flag or other warning device to the drawworks clutch lever as a reminder to the driller whenever the crown safety device is moved or deactivated to allow the traveling block to be raised above the the preset stopping point.

  • Secure drilling line ends prior to cutting.



Back to TopWire Rope Maintenance
Fig. 4. Improper wire rope clamp placement: "Never saddle a dead horse"
Fig. 4. Improper wire rope clamp placement
"Never saddle a dead horse"


Fig. 5. Proper wire rope clamp placement
Fig. 5. Proper wire rope clamp placement


Visually inspect wire ropes daily or per maintenance schedule.


Potential Hazards:
  • Getting cuts from the wickers or loose strands on the rope.

  • Receiving injuries to face and eyes from flying chips when cutting wire rope.
Possible Solutions:
  • Wear proper personnel protective equipment when cutting wire rope.

  • Seize wire rope before cutting.



Back to TopMud Circulating System
Fig. 6. Schematic of the circulating system: Drilling mud flows through the mud return line (center) upon its return to the surface from the hole to the shale shaker (upper left), then to the adjacent desander, desilter and degasser back to the mud tank (upper left). Through the suction line, the mud pump (center) circulates the mud through the discharge line (above), the stand pipe (upper right) through the rotary hose (right) and the swivel (lower right), the kelly and into the drill pipe.
Fig. 6. Circulating system

Maintenance activities include inspecting, adjusting, servicing on equipment such as mud pumps, hoses, hose connections, pop-off valve, shale shakers, belts, and guards.

Potential Hazards:
  • Being caught between, or struck by equipment.

  • Slips, trips, and falls.

  • Receiving a foreign body or fluid in the eye.

  • Burned by fluid contact.

  • Drowning in mud tank/pit.

  • Receiving strains and sprains.
Possible Solutions:
  • Use proper lockout/tagout procedures.

  • Wear personal protective equipment (such as hard hats, work gloves, safety shoes, and eye protection).

  • Be aware of the slipping and falling hazards when working on the mud circulating system.

  • Provide guardrails and guards around mud tanks.



Back to TopGenerator, Electric Motors and Electrical Systems
Fig. 7. Electric control panel
Fig. 7. Electric control panel


Fig. 8. Electric rig motor
Fig. 8. Electric rig motor

Electrical connections and power cords need to be checked for wear for deterioration and replaced if needed.

Electric motors need to be serviced at recommended intervals. All guards should be present and correctly installed and motors electrical connections need to be kept sealed.

Potential Hazards:
  • Receiving flash burns or shocks when servicing motors, generators, and breaker panels.
Possible Solutions:
  • Do not wash down generators, electric motors and breaker panels with water hose.

  • Use proper lockout/tagout procedures.

  • Wear appropriate personal protective equipment.

  • Avoid wearing jewelry.

  • Do not stand directly in front of breakers when operating.

  • Use dielectric mat in front of control panel or breaker panel.
Potential Hazards:
  • Being caught in moving equipment.
Possible Solutions:
  • Avoid wearing jewelry.

  • Use proper lockout/tagout procedures.

  • Wear appropriate personal protective equipment.

  • Cover with appropriate shields or guards all exposed revolving parts such as belts, flexible drives, generators, shafts and other moving parts to prevent contact and injury.
Additional Information:


Back to Top Engines
Fig. 9. Diesel rig engines
Fig. 9. Diesel rig engines

Engines require servicing at recommended intervals.

Potential Hazards:
  • Getting burned by hot fluids or engine parts.
Possible Solutions:
  • Wear appropriate personal protective equipment.

  • Let engine cool down before working on it.

  • Use proper lockout/tagout procedures.
Potential Hazards:
  • Being caught in moving equipment or moving parts.
Possible Solutions:
  • Wear appropriate personal protective equipment.

  • Use proper lockout/tagout procedures.

  • Cover all exposed revolving parts with appropriate shields and guards.



Back to Top Derrick Equipment Maintenance
Fig. 10. Swivel maintenance
Fig. 10. Swivel maintenance


Maintenance activities in the derrick consists of lubricating the swivel, traveling block, and crown block, and replacement of swivel packing.


Potential Hazard:
  • Getting caught between equipment and objects.
Possible Solutions:
  • Use proper lockout/tagout procedures.
Potential Hazard:
  • Falling from heights.
Possible Solutions:
  • Use appropriate fall protection.
Potential Hazard:
  • Being struck by falling tools or equipment.
Possible Solutions:
  • Wear appropriate personnel protective equipment.

  • Minimize the number of personnel working on the rig floor.

  • Tie off tools.

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