The British Drilling Association (BDA) is the UK's trade association for the ground drilling industry.

Safety Alerts

This page features both BDA and other safety alerts from industry which will be useful for those in drilling and related activities.

The sharing of information is widely encouraged. An accident or near miss in one company, if published, can help save someone else in another company from experiencing the same and suffering injury. Any reports sent to the BDA will be treated confidentially - there is no need for the BDA to publish a company's name or details that will identify the company. We will however have to ensure that the report is authentic and valid.

Mar 2020 - Excavator unloading incident

Mar 2020 - Wire rope breakage on rotary rig winch 

Mar 2020 - Maintenance alert for wire ropes on rotary rig winches

Sep 2019 - Mandatory stop notice - Miller MightEvac Lifeline

Aug 2019 - Maintenance Alert - Hoisting Reel

Jul 2019 - Raising Shell Riddor Incident

Jul 2019 - Slipform Auger Incident

Jul 2019 - Lyme Disease Incident

Jun 2019 - Mobile wefare unit fire

Jun 2019 - U100 Sliding hammer alert

Apr 2019 - Malicious needle stick injury

Jan 2019 - Driver killed after grab arm hits overhead power line

Jan 2019 - Cancer risk from mild steel welding fumes

Jan 2019 - Quarry firm fined after worker gets entangled in unguarded machine 

Dec 2018 - Dumper throttle pedal incident

Dec 2018 - Crawler crane highway incident

Oct 2018 - Severe laceration to finger from measuring tape

Oct 2018 - Uncontrolled release of winch wire whilst under tension

Oct 2018 - Seasonal trip and fall alert

Oct 2018 - High potential near miss from lighting column

Oct 2018 - Maintenance of machinery whilst running

Oct 2018 - Exploding head torch battery

Sep 2018 - Two construction fined £1.4m after worker got foot trapped in rotating screw

Sep 2018 - 194 SIP grenades found on Cambridge building site

Sep 2018 - Blackthorn injury to hand

Sep 2018 - Serious injury from rotating winch

Aug 2018 - Lifting incident

Aug 2018 - Defective scaffold couplers

Jul 2018 - Crush injuries to piling operative

Jun 2018 - Construction firm fined over £500k after overhead power line contact

May 2018 - Freewheeling dumper crushes trench worker

May 2018 - Construction firm fined after death of dumper driver

Feb 2018 - Contractor fined £500,000 after worker run over by tipper truck

Jan 2018 - Contractor crushed between excavator and dumper

Nov 2017 - Contractor fined for cable strike burns

Nov 2017 - Serious laceration from borehole cover

Nov 2017 - Motorway near miss unloading CP rig

Oct 2017 - Blue Electric Cable

Oct 2017 - Broken leg after fall into hole

Sep 2017 - Auger penetration into rail tunnel

Sep 2017 - Operative severely injured by tele-handler (full details not known yet)

Jul 2017 - Near miss - falling swivel

Jul 2017 - Firm Fined £120,000 for ignoring HAVS  

Jul 2017 - Drilling rig boom dump rams failure 

Jul 2017 - Two jailed for trench fatality

Jun 2017 - Cable strike incidents

Jun 2017 - Track tensioning fatality

Jun 2017 - Maintenance alert for CP rigs 

May 2017 - Worker buried in 3m trench collapse

Mar 2017 - Contractor fined £400,000 after worker fell 4m

Mar 2017 - Needle stick injury warning

Mar 2017 - Inadequate service information led to cable strike and £600k fine

Mar 2017 - Firm fined £183,000 for back injuries to workers

Feb 2017 - Ground engineer ignored worker's numb hands

Jan 2017 - Surge in HAV breaches reported

Jan 2017 - 11kV Cable strike with breaker

Jan 2017 - Recall alert for Bosch angle grinders

Dec 2016 - Contractors hit with £2m fine after worker breaks leg in trench

Dec 2016 - Council fined £250,000 for not protecting workers' health 

Nov 2016 - Key health and safety statistics Great Britain (2015/16)

Nov 2016 - Large fine after pile tester died from carbon monoxide poisoning in welfare unit

Nov 2016 - Drilling contractor and client fined after mast hits 11kV power line

Oct 2016 - Dumper Fatality - M1 smart motorway contract

Oct 2016 - CP incidents - Severed thumb and broken finger 

Sep 2016 - Finger injury whilst concrete coring

Sep 2016 - Contractor suffered burns and nerve damage after cable strike

Sep 2016 - American drilling fatalities from unguarded drill rigs

Aug 2016 - Crane operator loses licence for falsifying driver records

July 2016 - Contractor fined £120,000 after worker sprained ankle

June 2016 - Firm fined £250,000 when workers are overcome by fumes in confined space 

June 2016 - Firm fined £500,000 after engineer breaks his back in fall

June 2016 - Firm fined £250,000 for overdue LOLER inspections

May 2016 - Casing incident severs driller thumb on jack-up barge

May 2016 - Major contractor fined £2.6 million after worker fatally crushed in trench

May 2016 - Hard shoulder near miss (video)

May 2016 - Serious injuries from stored energy in HDD rods 

May 2016 - High Pressure Gas Main Near Miss

May 2016 - Sinker bar - serious near miss

Apr 2016 - Flying object - Serious incident

Apr 2016 - Contractor jailed following trench collapse death

Apr 2016 - Contractor fined after worker injured in cable strike

Mar 2016 - Worker Loses Finger When Glove Gets caught in Drill

Feb 2016 - Drilling Damages Underground Tunnel Causing Debris to Fall onto Tube Train

Feb 2016 - Worker Dies After His Clothing Gets Tangled in a Rotary Auger Drilling Rig

Jan 2016 - Archaeological Investigation Exempt from CDM 

Jan 2016 - Dangerous Silica Dust Presentation

Jan 2016 - Overturning Dynamic Sampling Rig 

Jan 2016 - Head Injury to Driller

Jan 2016 - Fork Lift Extensions 

Jan 2016 - HSE Reiterates Guidance for Concrete Cutting

Dec 2015 - 2 Workers Seriously Burned After Hitting 11,000v Cable

Dec 2015 - Company fined and two directors get suspended prison sentence after 27 year old killed by telehandler

Dec 2015 - Driller Loses Fingers in Unguarded Rig

Nov 2015 - Blue Electric Cables

Nov 2015 - Firm Fined For Excavation Collapse

Nov 2015 - Generator Incident

Nov 2015 - Contractor in Court After Unsafe Excavation Puts Public and Workers at Risk 

Oct 2015 - Client Fined After Cable Strike While Digging Trench Leaves Worker With Life Changing Injuries

Oct 2015 - SPT Hammer Lifting Eye Failure

Oct 2015 - Recycling firm fined £200,000 after employee struck by telehandler

Oct 2015 - Sinker Bar Failure - Near miss

Oct 2015 - Piling Contractor Fined For Unguarded Rig

Oct 2015 - HSE Guidance - The prevention of entanglement in the rotary parts of drilling and piling rigs

Oct 2015 - Construction Firm Fined by HMRC for Red Diesel in Tractor on Public Road

Sep 2015 - Construction Firm Fined by HSE for Lack of Welfare Facilities

Sep 2015 - Construction Firm Fined by HSE for Unsecure Site

July 2015 - Quarry Company Fined After Major Face Failure

July 2015 - Stihl Saw Laceration

July 2015 - Telehandler Overturned on Soft Ground

July 2015 - Dangerous Release of Gas Whilst Piling

July 2015 - Cracking Warning over imported rebar

July 2015 - Summer Heat Stress - Be Prepared

July 2015 - Worker’s serious injuries after arms entangled in machine

June 2015 - Farm fined for fracturing gas pipeline

May 2015 - Health and Safety Laboratory - New Grip Rating for Safety Footwear

Apr 2015 - Overturned drilling rig whilst unloading

Apr 2015 - Overturned 14t Excavator whilst unloading

Mar 2015 - Finger injury forced amputation (warning - graphic pictures!)

Mar 2015 - Firm and director fined after excavation collapse

Feb 2015 - Nuneaton company in court after worker pulled into unguarded machine

Feb 2015 - Stability of drill rigs


What controls and training have you in place to avoid this ?

Feb 2015 - Rig Guarding to BS EN 16228:2014

A BDA Member who recently bought a new rig which complied with BS EN 16228:2014 found that after they carried out their risk assessment that it did not meet the higher standard given in PUWER regulations.

Members of the BDA who purchase or hire a drilling or piling rig which complies with BS EN 16228:2014 are advised to carry out their own risk assessment under PUWER to ensure they follow their Duty of Care and that the rig is fit for purpose.

Jan 2015 - Serious Head Injuries From Stilson Wrench Attached to Drill String

Jan 2015 - Glasgow Construction Firm in Court Over Power Line Damage

Dec 2014 - Wear your Hi-Viz & Keep it Clean

Dec 2014 - Company Sentenced After Worker Killed by Reversing Excavator 

Nov 2014 - Toppling Over of Drill Rig During Set Up

Nov 2014 - HSE - Carriage of Acetylene in Vehicles

Nov 2014 - Company Fined After Piling Contractor Suffers Serous Injuries

Nov 2014 - Tracking of Rig with Mast Raised.

It has come to the BDA's attention that some drilling operatives have been moving rigs around site with the mast or feed frame still in the raised position. This is bad practice and contrary to the advice given in the BDA Health and Safety Manual Sec 15.1.13. A rig travelling with a raised mast will have a radically elevated centre of gravity and could lead to it toppling over as in the attached clip

Oct 2014 - Hydraulic Injection Incident (Fatal)

Oct 2014 - Plant, Pedestrian Crush Incident

Oct 2014 - Slinging Incident

Aug 2014 - Reversing Incident

June 2014 - Equipment Damage

Sept 2014 - Deliveries Near Railway Lines

Aug 2014 - 20 mph London Speed Limit

Aug 2014 - Mini Piling Crush Injury

June 2014 - Cable strike incident

June 2014 - Fatal van crash

June 2014 - Geobore Head

June 2014 - HSE Blitz

February 2012 - Cable Strike potential serious incident

February 2012 - Operative electric shock

January 2012 - Angle Grinder handle breakage

January 2012 - Securing site cabins

December 2011 - Sampling Slide Hammer Failure

December 2011 - Excavations - Protection of public

December 2011 - Confined Space accident

February 2010 - Hydraulic Fluid Injection into finger and hand following hydraulic oil leak on a drilling rig

August 2009 - Fatality in off-loading drill pipe in Australia

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