The NDA provides some sound advice on safety.

New hires need to understand the importance of safety right from the get-go.
Our friends at the National Drilling Association (727-577-5006; have produced a series of “Tailgate Safety Tips” to provide training guidance to drilling contractors. Many topics are specifically designed for use in the drilling industry while others deal with more general safety topics. Here we present the association's Tailgate Safety Tip concerning new employees.

Statistics reveal workers are most susceptible to injuries during their first month on the job. This is an excellent reason to give new hires basic safety training as soon as they come under your supervision.

Welcome new employees.

Take time to welcome new employees to your crew. Introduce them to their co-workers. Walk them around the drill site and encourage other employees to help newer workers feel at ease. Your efforts will make both new and veteran workers feel more comfortable.

Provide guidance.

You will witness new employees trying hard to do things right in the beginning. You want them to feel at ease enough to ask questions and not be so anxious about their performance that they make mistakes or have accidents. Your new hires need to know how serious safety is right from the start. In your first discussions with new employees, reinforce the need for caution and appropriate protective equipment for each task. Emphasize that all unsafe conditions, accidents and “near misses” must be reported immediately. Show them what equipment they can and cannot operate without your authorization.

Employee orientation.

Your company's supervisors and trainers can orient new employees in company-wide practices, employee benefits and overall safety and accident prevention programs. You will want to be sure to cover the following issues:

  • The proper safety practices to use and hazards to be aware of at each site.

  • What to do if there is an accident or injury.

  • How to report emergencies.

  • How to care for and use personal protective equipment.

  • How to use tools, machinery or hazardous processes.

  • Housekeeping and personal cleanup rules.

  • The location of emergency equipment, first-aid supplies and smoking areas.

Training benefits.

New hire safety training demonstrates to new employees how concerned your company is about accident prevention. It is very important that new employees see how other workers perform their duties safely around the drill site. Be sure to answer any questions that new employees may have. Remember that supervisors also benefit by performing thorough orientation and safety programs - these programs help keep employee morale high and reduce accidents and employee turnover rates.