We’re always told that it’s important to work smarter, not harder, but if you’re not working safely, nothing else really matters. That’s where tricones come in. Regardless of the drilling project supported by tricones, there are a number of hazards to be aware of and corresponding ways of protecting yourself, your co-workers and your employees.
Drilling with tricones provides countless benefits, from access to vital resources to job creation to economic sustainability. Of course, rewards rarely come without risks, and drilling activity involving tricones is no exception. How well you manage those risks that sometimes accompany tricones will go a long way in determining the success and safety of your people, your project and your organization.
As part of drilling work involving tricones, oil and gas wells produced by tricones can release hydrogen sulphide, a colorless gas that is highly flammable and hazardous. At low levels, it can often be detected by smell due to its rotten egg scent. But the real danger arises when higher concentrations of the gas are produced in the course of drilling with tricones. This can actually remove your ability to smell hydrogen sulphide and expose you to the negative effects of the gas.
To ensure a safe working environment with all the advantages of tricones and no ill effects from hydrogen sulphide, focus on active monitoring, proper planning and worker training.
Certain types of drilling with tricones, such as hydraulic fracturing, can sometimes expose workers to hazardous chemicals that cause chemical burns when toxic vapors are inhaled during the work with tricones.
If your workplace is such that hazard chemicals may pose a risk in the course of your efforts with tricones, make sure you have proper labels and safety data sheets available. And, as always, there is no substitute for thorough training of all employees who risk exposure to harmful chemicals as part of their work with tricones.
Workers drilling with tricones are no strangers to loud noise, but it poses a danger in many lines of work regardless of whether tricones are involved. If employees must shout to be heard by a co-worker in close proximity during their labor with tricones, there could be a noise issue.
As well, if people complain of ringing or humming in their ears following a day filled with drilling and tricones, the next sound you hear should be alarm bells in your head warning of a problem.
To reduce the noise level in your work with tricones, ensure equipment and machinery are properly maintained and lubricated and opt for low-noise tools and machinery where possible. Using tricones on your site will facilitate these efforts, as their reliability and low maintenance make them less likely to contribute to such hazards.
Depending on the location of your project involving tricones, workers could be exposed to excessive heat or inordinate cold. Those who are impacted by heat stress during their endeavours with tricones could suffer heat stroke, exhaustion, cramps, or heat rashes.
Apart from mandatory first aid training, there are several measures that employers can take to counteract the hazards of heat for employees as they toil with tricones:
- Acclimatize your staff by gradually exposing them to hot work environments for greater periods of time.
- Provide cool water or liquids to workers. Avoid sugary drinks or highly caffeinated beverages.
- Provide rest periods and cool areas for shelter during breaks.
Those who must endure extreme cold as part of their work with tricones face their own dangers, including hypothermia, frostbite and trench foot. Recommended preventative measures include layering, wearing a hat and insulated boots, and spending work breaks in a warm location. It’s also suggested that workers avoid mixing alcohol and drilling with tricones in cold weather, but that’s probably sound advice regardless of the temperature.
Everyone has their own motivation for making it through the work day unscathed, whether it’s a spouse, a child or a parent. Staying aware of the hazards and taking steps to mitigate them may require some time and effort, but when it gets you home safely at night, you’ll agree it was time well spent. And so will your loved ones.
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