Are you looking for ways to make drilling projects safer for your crew?
Safety is crucial when you work in the drilling industry. So, you and your team should know how to handle the situation as much as avoid it.
Horizontal drilling is a technique used when installing an oil or gas well. The downside is that it poses a few risks if you’re not careful enough.
We put together a couple of safety tips to guide you during a project!
Take Time to Plan and Prepare
You can prevent problems that take days or weeks to fix with only a few minutes of planning and preparation. It means being ready to face any situation, whether it’s the proper process or an emergency.
An HDD operator gets the most exposure to the process among everyone in a drilling team. And so, it’s good to ensure they get enough training to counter any possible situation.
Providing them with extra equipment to make their job easier, like a tracker, is one way to lower risks.
Assess the Risks
Most operators do directional drilling work without knowing what they may encounter. That’s because there’s usually no view of what they could dig underground. Because of this, you should assess any risk and identify possible hazards.
Each project falls under three categories: mini, mid, and maxi. These refer to the depth and diameter of the project. Sometimes, it can also dictate the level of danger.
Locate Any Existing Line
A vital part of the horizontal drilling process is locating existing utility lines. If you start a project without doing this, it could damage surrounding pipes and cables.
One way to lower the chance of damage is white-lining the area to excavate. After, you can check in with owners to see if their lines are within the lined spaces.
It also helps to get subsurface utility engineering services for better results. As much as possible, you should double-check the locates in case some lines are further down.
Practice Safety When Exposing Lines
When deciding how to expose lines for a project, it’s always best to choose the safest method. One way is by using a vacuum excavator for soft excavation.
Unlike locating equipment, a vacuum excavator will reveal the lines when you reach it. It works after exposing them to daylight. And so it can alert your crew and let them stay a safe distance away throughout the project.
Track the Drill
You must track the drill head or every full pipe throughout the drilling process. It’s best to mark each tracking location to check on progress and ensure the bore is on the right path.
Many recommend using an HDD locator to guide you. For more information on how they work, check out pilottrackhdd.com.
Use These Horizontal Drilling Safety Tips Today
Directional drilling can be risky when you fail to follow proper precautionary measures. The potential dangers affect your crew, equipment, and even utility lines.
Learning safety tips before horizontal drilling is imperative in protecting your team. Browse our blog if you’re interested in more!
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