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There are numerous dangers involved in working on an oil rig. You are at a much higher risk of nonfatal injury than most other jobs.
Oil field safety becomes more important when you are offshore. You’ll have a lack of access to emergency services. Help will have to come from shore via boat or helicopter and can be impeded by bad weather.
Taking the proper precautions is vital to not becoming an injury statistic. As offshore oil drilling continues to grow in popularity, so too do the number of accidents that occur.
7 Safety Tips for Offshore Oil Workers
Working offshore comes with a variety of stresses that working onshore doesn’t. Working out at sea can bring about feelings of separation that can cause a lack of attention to detail.
Falling, explosions and fire are all leading causes of injury and death. When you are offshore, the danger posed by any accident is much higher.
- Pay Attention to Regular Maintenance
Complacency is the cause of most accidents. Not properly maintaining your equipment will cause injury. Out at sea, there is no room for second chances when it comes to properly caring for equipment.
Remember that you’re not alone when working offshore. Try to encourage the people around you to take regular maintenance seriously.
Any kind of breakdown can cause risks to you and those around you. You have to rely upon your entire team to keep everyone safe.
- Report Unsafe Behaviors
It can be difficult to complain or report safety violations. Nobody wants to report a fellow worker for not working safely. You might even feel that your job could be at risk if you do so.
If someone gets hurt or killed because of a behavior you could’ve stopped, you’ll regret it forever. On an offshore oil rig, their behavior could get you or someone else hurt or killed too.
Protect your team and yourself by making sure to address any unsafe behaviors head-on. It’s far more important that everyone goes home safe.
- Always Wear Protective Equipment
It can be a big hassle to use all the personal protective equipment you are provided. In a survey of those who received eye injuries, three-fifths of workers weren’t wearing proper equipment.
Injuries in the oil industry can cause lasting impacts. The chemicals and solvents used can cause serious damage to you.
Wearing your protective equipment does not make you appear weak. Encourage your teammates to do the same thing. If everyone wears their protective equipment, fewer injuries will occur.
- Communicate Safety Concerns
Inspectors and management should be made aware of any concerns that you have. If you inform them of potentially unsafe machines or situations, they have a responsibility to act.
Document all of your safety concerns as well. Note whether or not you have had a chance to communicate them. This will help you in the event an accident does occur.
Federal law has strict provisions for offshore oil rigs that your company has to follow. If they don’t, they open themselves up for fines and lawsuits. Be proactive to prevent injury.
- Carry out Safety Sweeps
Tour the area you are going to be working in. A visual inspection should be made at all times. If any repairs need to be made, do them.
Make sure access points are open and not blocked. Passageways and catwalks should be free of impediments. Liquids that have spilled or leaked should be cleaned up immediately.
Check to see if all emergency equipment is easy to reach and clearly labeled. Being able to reach the proper equipment in an emergency can be the difference between life and death.
- Pay Attention to Mental Health
Working on any oil rig comes with certain expectations. Most oil rig workers want to be seen as tough and capable by their peers.
Being on an offshore oil rig for extended periods can cause a lot of issues. Depression and anxiety are very common in these situations, especially to those who are new to working offshore.
Many accidents are caused by distractions and mental stress makes us more easily distracted. Do not feel pressured to hide any difficulties you are having.
Working as a team means supporting each other as a team. Take care of yourself and do what you can for those around you.
- Make Your Team a Safety First Team
It is not just management and executives that should try to promote safety. As an offshore oil rig worker, safety should be one of your primary concerns.
If proper oil field safety protocols aren’t followed, you’ll be the one most affected. Promote the importance of safety to your team every chance you get.
Oil Field Safety Is Never Ending
You must be prepared at all times and follow safe working practices. Just because you’re familiar with a process or job doesn’t mean you should drop your guard and let it become routine. Stay alert and on your toes.
Even when we do our best, accidents will still happen. If you are injured while working on an offshore oil rig, you do have legal protections. The Jones Act provides protections for people working at sea.
Being on an oil rig is legally considered to be working at sea.
Safety First and Everyone Comes Home
While you can’t stop all accidents from happening, working safe will reduce the likelihood of serious injury. Fatalities are far less common when everyone keeps an eye on oil field safety as they work.
Being an offshore oil rig worker can be very lucrative. It won’t do you any good to make good money if you aren’t around to enjoy it.
The very same loved ones that motivate you to work long, hard hours in an isolated environment want you to come home. If you are healthy and happy, your family will be healthy and happy.
The only way to ensure your safety is to take safety seriously.
We hope this article helped you understand the importance of safety for offshore rig workers. If you found it insightful, we invite you to browse our website for other related reads!