Health and Safety for the Water Well Industry

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Workers in the water well industry face risks to their health and safety. Business owners and managers must ensure that they have strong health and safety systems in place, and assess them continuously.

Some of the hazards of bore drilling work include potential hearing loss and exposure to electricity. Following are some guidelines on safeguarding labourers from these on-the-job hazards.

Preventing hearing loss

Bore drillers are exposed to high levels of noise while working. In a typical drilling job, they are exposed to noise levels as high as 85dB(A) while performing specific tasks. Being exposed to a high level of noise for a consistent period is hazardous and can lead to hearing impairment, sleep disturbance, hypertension and ischemic heart disease.

Employees at a work site who are in proximity of work must always wear personal hearing protection devices (HPDs). The HPDs must be clean, comfortable for the wearer and worn correctly. Business owners need to provide a wide range of HPDs in different styles so workers can find the ones that best fit their ears comfortably.

HPDs lower the worker’s exposure to noise, but these pieces of equipment will not eliminate noise. Bore drillers must consistently use HPDs to prevent noise-induced hearing loss.

Safeguarding against electricity

Business owners and workers need to work together to create site and task-specific guidelines for electrical safety. Bore drillers must ensure that the rig’s electrical systems are working efficiently. They also need to check the integrity of internal safety mechanisms, the grounding system, electrical wiring and operating voltage.

Accidents involving electrical cables often occur when drills are being set up, moved or broken down. Power lines must be located and verified in advance, and labourers must take precautions to avoid them.

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Business owners must regularly assess site practices ensuring optimum health and safety for their workers. Compliance with these guidelines and applying them consistency will help minimise injuries and fatalities in the workplace.