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Oil and Gas Well Drilling and Servicing eTool

General Safety and Health Safety and Health Program

Figure 1. Welding with fire control

Figure 1. Welding with fire control

Establish a safety and health program. For additional information refer to OSHA’s Recommended Practices for Safety and Health Programs. See also OSHA's Oil and Gas Extraction Safety and Health Topics Page.

Also, contact OSHA consultation services. From the OSHA consultation service, employers can find out about potential hazards at their worksites, improve their safety and health programs, and even qualify for a one-year exemption from routine OSHA inspections.

Refer to the following topics for additional safety and health information:

There are many ways to protect from slips, trips, and falls. Even so, they still happen and the following are means to either prevent slips, trips, and falls or to minimize the consequences if they should happen.

  • 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 drilling floor, servicing rig floors or other platforms.
  • Keep all work areas clean and clear of oil, tools, and debris.
  • Use non-skid surfaces where appropriate.
  • Provide guardrails and guards around work areas that are prone to slips, trips, and falls.
  • Install, inspect, and secure stairs and handrails. [29 CFR 1926.1052]
  • Instruct workers on proper procedures for using and installing ladders.
  • Use only ladders in good repair that do not have missing rungs.
  • Do not install stairs with missing or damaged steps. Repair them before installing them.
  • Keep walkways clean and free of debris and tripping hazards. [29 CFR 1910.22]
  • Keep all cords and hoses orderly and clear of walking spaces.
  • Cover open cellars.
  • Conduct a pre-job inspection to identify, then eliminate or correct hazardous work surfaces.
  • Walking/Working Surfaces Standard requires [29 CFR 1910.22(a)(1)]: Keep all places of employment clean and in an orderly condition.
  • Keep aisles and passageways clear and in good repair, with no obstruction across or in aisles that could create a hazard [29 CFR 1910.22(b)(1)]. Provide floor plugs for equipment so power cords need not run across pathways.
  • Use waterproof footgear to decrease slip/fall hazards.

Additional Resources:

  • 29 CFR 1910.22, General requirements (Walking/working surfaces). OSHA Standard.
  • Small Business Handbook. OSHA Publication 2209, (2005). Helps small business employers meet the legal requirements imposed by the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (the Act), and achieve an in-compliance status before an OSHA inspection.
  • Fall Protection
    • Fall Protection. OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page.
    • ANSI Z359, Fall Protection Code (Version 3.0).
      • ANSI/ASSE Z359.0-2012, Definitions & Nomenclature Used for Fall Protection & Fall Arrest
      • ANSI/ASSE Z359.1-2007, Safety Requirements for Personal Fall Arrest Systems, Subsystems & Components
      • ANSI/ASSE Z359.2-2007, Minimum Requirements for a Comprehensive Managed Fall Protection Program
      • ANSI/ASSE Z359.3-2007, Safety Requirements for Positioning & Travel Restraint Systems
      • ANSI/ASSE Z359.4-2013, Safety Requirements for Assisted-Rescue & Self-Rescue Systems, Subsystems & Components
      • ANSI/ASSE Z359.6-2009, Specifications & Design Requirements for Active Fall Protection Systems
      • ANSI/ASSE Z359.12-2009, Connecting Components for Personal Fall Arrest Systems
      • ANSI/ASSE Z359.13-2013, Personal Energy Absorbers & Energy-Absorbing Lanyards
      • ANSI/ASSE Z359.14-2012, Safety Requirements for Self-Retracting Devices for Personal Fall Arrest & Rescue Systems
    • International Association of Drilling Contractors (IADC)
      • Working at Height
    • American Petroleum Institute (API)
    • Standards. API.
      • RP 54, Occupational Safety for Oil and Gas Well Drilling and Servicing Operations.
      • RP 74, Recommended Practice for Occupational Safety for Onshore Oil and Gas Production Operations.
    • Construction. OSHA eTool.

General solutions for strains and sprains include:

  • Use proper lifting technique.
  • Hoist slowly to limit pipe momentum.
  • Seek assistance when moving awkward and heavy guards and covers.
  • Use proper stance and slip-lifting techniques. Slips have three handles and should be lifted jointly by more than one person.
  • Use lifting equipment and limit manual positioning of elevators.
  • Practice proper hand placement and use of pullback (tail) ropes.
  • Use mechanical lifting aids, proper lifting techniques, and team lifting where appropriate.
  • Use proper hand and body positioning.
  • Ergonomics. OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page.
    • Hand Injury
    • Lifting
    • Repetitive motions

Weather conditions can create hazardous working conditions: therefore it is necessary to monitor weather conditions and forecasts to allow time to prepare for such conditions as may occur. Lightning is especially hazardous and unpredictable. When lightning is present, crews must avoid situations where they could become part of potential current paths.

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