Safety must be Priority for the Oil Sector

The oil and gas sector has always been inherently risky. Each company is doing its best in mitigating the risk by applying different new technologies, it is unlikely that risk will be removed entirely from industry operations anytime soon.


What Exactly Are the Risks within the Industry?

It is first worth checking out in further information about the usual threats and dangers associated with the industry. When asked about the practice, many people will say with confidence that oil drilling not safe. When probed further, however, fairly few individuals appear to be aware of the certain threat of the industry, themselves. Never has health and safety been much less of a box-ticking exercise for a market than it has for the oil sector, where failings can have the utmost of consequences. The most common form of accidents that occur on-site (both onshore and offshore) include:

Explosions/fires. Flammable gases and chemicals are handled and dealt with every day in oil facilities. These volatile compounds present a huge fire risk. Even the slightest of leakages, for example, have potentially catastrophic ramifications and can create millions of losses and harm to the environment.

Vehicle collisions. Collisions between vehicles present the industry’s deadliest hazard when reviewed statistically. But, in many ways, it is a hazard that still does not garner the recognition or attention it requires (though this is changing as we shall see later on). Fatigue and poor pre-planning are among the leading causes of these on-road accidents.

Reducing Vehicle Collisions. More often than not, colliding vehicle accidents stem from driver fatigue and being out of focus. The oil industry comprises a huge number of different logistical components, of which long-distance transportation is a major one. The remote location of many drilling sites means that driving long distances is simply part and parcel of the job.

Simple though it may seem, one of the best ways in which these collisions can be mitigated is through better education and journey planning. Making your staff aware of the benefits of plentiful sleep (and, conversely, the dangers that arise from a lack of it) and planning journeys that factor in potential rest stops are crucial in reducing the number of accidents on the road. Vehicles must be checked as well such as the tires and breaks making sure that that the truck’s machine is working properly.

Drone Technology. Prevention is better than cure, as the old saying goes. The ideal solution for every oil company is to prevent accidents from occurring in the first place. Thermal Drones offers a comprehensive bird’s eye view of the entire site, and it can help to identify potential hazards in real-time. For instance, drones are now being used in the inspection of pipelines, pinpointing leakages and giving oil companies a more well-informed view of the hazard at hand rather than having to send employees out to inspect a potentially risky situation.

Caught-in accidents. These hazards are, as they say, “on the tin.” It usually happens when someone becomes caught between or pinned by moving parts from which they cannot easily remove themselves. One of the most common examples of caught-in hazards is a driller’s clothing becoming caught in revolving/rotating parts such as a rig’s driveshaft.



This should be the starting point from which the frequency and severity of workplace accidents are addressed, more generally. Only then, when we begin to see sustained decreases in these areas as well as annual deaths, will we know that the industry has become one where health and safety take precedence over profit.

As much as anything else, the key to tightening industry standards of safety is to be proactive, rather than reactive. Better equipment inspection, journey planning, communication, and education are all ways in which potential hazards can be identified before they develop into tangible personal safety threats.

Related links: – Gas Leak Inspection using IR Technology –  FLIR GFx320 explosive proof Thermal Camera – IRGas Retina solution for continuous gas leak monitoring