Top 30 Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips: Workers in the oil and gas extraction industry continue to be one of the highest at risk of injuries.

And fatalities on the job compared to all other industries in the world.

The most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (2015) revealed that out of 120 workplace deaths in the mining, oil and gas extraction industry, 74 of them occurred within the support activities for oil and gas operations (NAICS 213112).

The constant pressure of efficient productivity due to the high cost of drilling projects.

Time away from home, long work days, and high physical demands takes a hefty toll on workers.

These factors can ultimately affect worker safety by causing an increase in human error including misuse of equipment and inconsistent procedures that can lead to higher chance of accidents.

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Improving Safety for Oil and Gas Workers

This reinforces the importance of the re-evaluation of safety programs.

And behaviour to more effectively address worker safety issues.

And reduce the rate of injuries and accidents in the industry.

Apply these tips to improve worker safety on your next project:


Develop a relationship with local emergency response organizations.

And establish a consistent flow of communication to provide a higher level of overall safety.

Emergency responders, rig hands, and exploration company safety and health professionals must work together.

To utilize their resources to be ready to handle emergencies swiftly and successfully.

Discuss specific health and safety hazards that exist at the drilling location.

And determine how to best assist each other in these emergencies.

If possible, take emergency res-ponders on a tour of the drilling site or rig to give them a clearer idea of how to approach potential emergencies.


Encourage an environment of open communication and respect.

Embrace a personal approach to safety training and dedicate time to allow workers to get to know each other.

Building more substantial personal connections with fellow workers will inherently build trust and comradely when out in the field to improve overall safety.


A large factor that negatively affects safety in the industry is worker culture.

Eliminate the age-old “tough guy” exterior and stereotype that is typically associated with workers in the industry.

By promoting a transparent and open environment.

Through various training techniques and team exercises.

Building a sense of community and trust with workers will make it easier for them to be more willing to ask for help.

Obey rules, admit mistakes, and seek advice making for a more positive and safe environment.

Research conducted on mobile workers in the Alberta Oil Sands in 2014 revealed masculine work cultures.

Or what it means to be a “man” in these environments, caused men to internalize their feeling of exhaustion, stress, and more.

Leaving their physical and mental health hanging on by a thread until it’s too late.


Before work begins, ensure everyone who will be conducting work understands their role.

Hazards that exist, and all safety precautions.

Require procedures and hazards to be fully communicated to new workers in the event of shift handovers and work site changes.


Reduce the chances of fatal accidents by keeping floors, pathways, and all work areas clear of unnecessary items.

To prevent trips and falls and struck-by hazards.

Implement clear signage that directs workers to emergency and safety equipment to quickly combat hazards. E.g.: equip all problem areas with spill kits in the event a chemical or oil spill occurs.


Improve the workflow and reduce waste with a 5S system.

Apply strategic labeling techniques to direct, warn, and communicate a variety of different information to workers.

Color-code materials in the workplace to make them easier and quicker to find including specific tools, equipment, and more.


Accidents from driving or riding in a motor vehicle account for the highest number of total fatalities in the oil and gas industry.

Monitor driver behavior to analyze issues and poor habits to determine how to improve your vehicle safety programs and worker training.



Strive to eliminate miscommunication and confusion with legible and reliable signs and labels to convey dangers and safety instructions.

Create custom signs to communicate procedures specific to certain work crews and work sites.

Replace worn out, illegible, and outdated signage as soon as possible.

Check for faded floor marking that is in need of re-application.


When worksites, projects, and crews change.

Take the time to assess that signs and labels are in the correct areas.

And communicate present hazards and procedures before the next project begins.

This will ensure dangers and details about specific locations will be known when new workers come in.


When working on offshore rigs, the machines are your lifeline when you’re hundreds of miles from shore.

Prevent premature machine failure and keep your workers safe by conducting regular maintenance checks of machinery.

Communicate the importance of regular maintenance checks to your workers using OSHA maintenance activities in their Oil and Gas Well Drilling and Servicing eTool.

It’s an understatement to say in the past few years the oil and gas industry – both “upstream” in exploration and drilling operations, and “downstream” in refining processes.

Has gone through formidable safety challenges and traumatic safety-related incidents.

Today, major oil and gas multinationals are among the most transparent of any enterprises in sharing safety and health lessons learned and best practices.

As the industry strives to achieve and maintain the public trust necessary to pursue sources of energy.

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips

11. Using of seat belts:

Vehicle crashes are the single largest cause of fatalities to workers in the oil and gas industry, making up four out of every ten fatalities in the industry.

In about half of the cases, the victims were not wearing seat belts.

Something as simple as ensuring all occupants buckle up when traveling in vehicles could significantly lower injury and fatality statistics.

12. Pre-screen employers

Many oil and gas companies evaluate and screen relevant skill levels and experience of prospective employees early in the recruiting process.

Screening can include questions that identify candidates who have demonstrated a commitment to workplace safety in the past.

And who have demonstrated previous on-the-job safe behaviors.

Whether a candidate cares about safety on the job – both his and his co-workers – can be based on assessments provided by previous co-workers and managers.

13. Leadership style:

Research into safety shows that an uninvolved and passive safety leadership style has a negative impact on employee safety compliance and safety participation behavior.

Being an active and effective safety leader means constantly promoting safety – not occasionally or periodically.

Leaders must be consistent and predictable in their approach to safety.

They need to have an active engagement with employees about safety.

14. Train safety leaders

About 9,500 attendees have taken part in BP’s capability development programs on safety and operations each year.

These include the Operations Academy, an advanced program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that provides senior operating leaders with skills and tools to run operations safely and reliably.

Leaders in the Field provides practical, site-based training for leaders in effective engagement with staff to ensure safe operations.

Operating Essentials are interactive, cross-functional  programs and workshops covering specific aspects of operating such as process safety and risk assessment.

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips

15. Healthy workplaces

Fitness campaign aims to encourage participants to look for opportunities to introduce, maintain or increase the amount of physical activity they undertake on a day-to-day basis.

The challenge is open to BP employees, contractors, family and friends, who join forces in teams of ten to look for ways to include physical activity in their daily routine.

In 2013, more than 5,000 people from 30 countries participated.

16. Contractor safety

Oil and gas company seeks to set out clear and consistent expectations of its contractors.

In oil and gas upstream business, its standard model contract includes safety, health, security and environment requirements.

In some cases, bridging documents are needed to define how oil and gas safety management system and that of its contractors co-exist to manage risk on the work site.

Contractors involved in potentially  high-consequence activity in oil and gas upstream business, such as work on rigs and offshore installations, demand high scrutiny.

This includes pre-contract quality, technical and health, safety, security and environment audits carried out on a risk-prioritized basis.

Governance boards review and endorse sourcing of all significant potentially high-consequence activity contracts.

Standard performance metrics are written into contracts that cover areas such as safety, quality and continuous improvement.

Metrics are tracked and discussed during regular performance review meetings.

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips

17. Safety culture

Chevron has spent more than 20 years building its culture of safety.

Based on the premise that incidents are preventable and that zero incidents is achievable.

Chevron’s safety culture includes starting meetings with safety lessons, tracking and awarding business units for strong safety performance.

Sharing best practices and lessons learned throughout the company.

And using behavior-based safety evaluations. Since 2003, Chevron has prohibited talking or using cellphones or electronic devices while driving a company vehicle or driving on company business.

Based on location and type of vehicle driven, Chevron requires its workforce to complete specific driving training.

18. Emergency preparedness

In 2013, ConocoPhillips conducted four major emergency preparedness response exercises on three continents.

About 1,000 people participated in these large-scale exercises, including the ConocoPhillips Global Incident Management Assist Team (GIMAT).

Drills often include participation by third-party experts, oil spill response organizations, and government emergency response agencies.

GIMAT also undertook a week of specialized training during 2013.

The 125 GIMAT participants worked side by side with an international oil spill response company and local regulators, sharing best practices and honing skills.

19. Exposure assessment

Oil and gas  has a process for identifying, evaluating and controlling workplace hazards.

The core of the process is the requirement for each business unit to develop and implement an Exposure Assessment Plan (EAP) for employees and contractors.

The EAP identifies chemical and non-chemical risks that workers may be exposed to during daily work.

Sampling performed under an EAP focuses efforts on minimizing exposure risks to both workers and the community.

Occupational health and industrial hygiene performance metrics are used to continually evaluate processes.

Metrics measure the effectiveness of chemical risk identification processes, associated protection measures, and medical surveillance of worker health.

20 Keep it simple

ExxonMobil Pipeline Company’s safety and health performance goal is simple: “Nobody Gets Hurt.”

To achieve this vision, the company’s safety policy states: “All employees/contractors are responsible for ensuring a safe workplace.

Safety procedures are not to be compromised to achieve other goals.

Operations and maintenance activities will be carried out in accordance with established safety practices, rules and regulations.

Chemical substance abuse involving alcohol and/or drugs will not be tolerated.

Off the job safety awareness for employees and their families will be encouraged.”

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips

21. Management systems

Oil and gas  uses a system called the Operations Integrity and Management System (OIMS) to guide every operating decision made on a daily basis.

OIMS consists of 11 separate elements:

1) Management leadership, commitment and accountability;

2) Risk assessment and management;

3) Facilities design and construction;

4) Information/documentation;

5) Personnel and training;

6) Operations and maintenance;

7) Management of change;

8)Third-party services;

9)  Incident investigation and analysis;

10) Community awareness and emergency preparedness; and

11) Operations integrity assessment and improvement.

22. Management of change

Oil and gas  process for managing change addresses: authority for approval of changes.

Analysis of operations integrity implications; compliance with standards and regulations.

Acquisition of needed permits; documentation, including reason for change; communication of risks associated with the change and required mitigation measures; time limitations; and training.

23. Maintenance

Oil and gas  operating, maintenance and inspection procedures include, where appropriate, special procedures for activities with potentially high risk.

Operating envelope considerations; regulatory and environmental aspect considerations; and human factors considerations.

A work permit process incorporates checks and authorizations that are consistent with mechanical and operational risks.

Temporary disarming, deactivation or unavailability of critical equipment is managed.

Critical equipment is identified and tested, and it undergoes preventive maintenance.

Mechanical integrity programs are in place and stewarded to assure the testing, inspection and maintenance of equipment.

Interfaces between operations are assessed and procedures are in place to manage identified risks.

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips

24. Fire safety

In 2013, Saudi Aramco unveiled its “Smoke Detector Awareness Campaign” aimed at increasing the installation and use of smoke detectors.

The campaign was conducted in three shopping malls, in Dhahran, Riyadh and Jiddah, with each campaign consisting of both a theatre performance and viewer interaction stage.

There were more than 260,500 attendees from around the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and more than 25,000 smoke detectors were distributed.

25. Wellness

Saudi Aramco states that “Our business ambitions cannot be achieved without a healthy work culture and high-performance workforce.

Saudi Aramco’s “Wellcare” program has measurably improved its business competitiveness through productivity gains arising from improved employee health status, the company states.

The program consists of online and on-site health improvement and injury prevention resources, physical activity classes, lifestyle and wellness coaching courses, health screening clinics, healthy lifestyle modification classes and injury prevention programs.

Management teams nominate wellness “champions” who complete a four-day certification program and attend an annual conference.

Saudi Aramco estimates “Wellcare” has led to a cost avoidance of $3.5 million between 2005-2011 through a reduction in health risks and increased physical activity.

It has also benefited employee job satisfaction, work engagement, stress management and productivity, according to the company.

26. Cardinal rules

Oil and gas  has 12 mandatory “Life-Saving” rules for all employees and contractors.

They are: 1) Work with a valid permit when required;

2) Conduct gas tests when required;

3) Verify isolation before work begins and use the specified life protection equipment;

4) Obtain authorization before entering a confined space;

5) Obtain authorization before overriding or disabling safety critical equipment;

6) Protect yourself against a fall when working at heights;

7) Do not walk under a suspended load;

8) Do not smoke outside designated smoking areas;

9) No alcohol or drugs while working or driving;

10) While driving, do not use your phone and do not exceed speed limits;

11) Wear your seat belt; and

12) Followed prescribed journey management plan.

If employees break the rules, they face disciplinary action up to termination of employment. Contractors can be removed from the site and barred from future work with Shell.

Read also: How to Invest in Oil and Gas in Nigeria

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips

27. Safety days

Oil and gas holds annual global safety days with its employees and contractors to strengthen its safety culture.

In 2014, the safety day theme was “Take time for safety.” Around the world, employees and contractors took part in events, sharing ideas and best practices.

Collectively, they reaffirmed their commitment to building a “Goal Zero” culture. Using a “virtual wall,” they could also write a personal pledge for everyone to see.

28 Road safety

In Turkey, oil and gas  companies uses a traveling road show with a mobile health clinic.

Taking vital health checks and safety information to truck drivers.

Who may be unaware of the personal risks they face.

Surprises such as horse-drawn carts or cars without headlights at night can pose risks.

The number of road deaths in Turkey is ten times higher than in France or Germany.

A seven-vehicle convoy of doctors, safety experts, and other professionals travelled to 17 events at service stations in ten cities across Turkey.

It was the first time truckers in Turkey had the chance to visit road safety booths and demonstrations and take advantage of free vision, hearing and health check-ups at truck stops.

29.Industrial theatre

At oil and gas giant energy project, the Pearl GTL plant in Qatar, industrial theatre was used to drive home safety messages.

Under the desert sun, workers in hard hats and coveralls gathered beneath a scaffold jutting about 40 feet into the sky.

Suddenly, a human shape hurtled down from above, landing with a sickening thud amplified by nearby microphones.

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips

When the mannequin hit, a collective gasp went up.

The dramatic exercise emphasized the potentially gruesome consequences of failing to use a safety harness when working high above the ground.

For a workforce comprised of people from more than 60 countries and speaking at least as many languages.

The sight and sound of a man-sized dummy crashing to the ground broke through communication barriers.

Read also: Top Business Opportunities in Oil and Gas Industry

30 Checks and balances

Checks and Balances is one of five current focus areas for safe, reliable and efficient operations at oil and gas .

Checks and Balances is about inspection, checking, auditing — what oil and gas calls “assurance.” States oil and gas.

When it comes to safety, as long as you are careful to maintain clear accountability and a clear sense of ownership by decision-makers, two heads can be better than one and three can be better than two.

So oil and gas has a three-tier approach to assurance.

The line, which is accountable for safety.

Conducts self-verification to confirm whether it is conforming to the operating management system.

And to confirm that their barriers are robust, and to enable them to take action if they are not.

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips

Second, the Safety and Operational Risk organization (S&OR) provides targeted, risk-based assurance by checking to see how the line is meeting requirements and maintaining and operating barriers.

S&OR, staffed by hundreds of professionals whose focus is on safety and operational risk, does not absolve line managers of responsibility for safety and operational risk.

Oil and gas makes it clear that the line is accountable for safety.

S&OR helps them manage the risks effectively and conducts risk-based assurance.

The third assurance tier is the audit. In addition to oil and gas internal audit team.

The company has an audit team inside S&OR and conducts a risk-based program of regular safety and operations audits of the businesses operating on BP’s operating management system.

Oil and gas  also audits third-party rigs and ships to check that they meet oil and gas applicable standards.

Oil/Gas Business Health/safety Tips


You need durable supplies to ensure your safety messages can endure grease, grime, and extreme temperatures.

Utilize the portable and versatile DuraLabel Toro industrial label and sign printer to print OSHA, ANSI, and NFPA compliant labels for a variety of applications including chemical labeling, pipe marking, arc flash, GHS/HazCom 2012, and more. Toro has the ability to function network-free so it’s ready to print wherever you are.

To support your safety programs, it’s important to have highly visible floor marking and wayfinding to safely guide workers.

Effectively warn, direct, and protect workers from hazards in a variety of different work areas using PathFinder floor marking, wayfinding, and safety tapeby Graphic Products. You can prevent slips and falls from elevated platforms with a durable grip on slippery surfaces using PathFinder tread tape on floors, handrails, stairs, and wherever extra traction is needed.

With these 30 tips, you can be on your way to create a safer work environment to reduce the likelihood of accidents on your next oil and gas project.

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