The Queensland Department of Mines and Energy (DME) has released a Significant Incident Report urging workers to be more careful when operating equipment, after a driller had his feet crushed when the drill rig foot clamps closed unexpectedly.
The operator was standing at the bottom of the mast attaching the cyclone pipe. Both of his feet were under the open foot clamps.
The driller’s offsider accidentally knocked a set of Allen keys off the control console. The keys hit the control lever operating the foot clamps closing both on to the operator’s feet.
The foot clamps operate under hydraulic pressure. At the time of accident, the engine for the hydraulic pump was running. As the foot clamps are required to hold the drill string in place, they will operate through the accumulator even when the hydraulic pump is not operating.
The Significant Incident Report recommended that all controls, where possible, be returned to the neutral position when pressure to a lever is released, and that loose objects be properly secured.
To see the full incident report, click here.
Inspector of Mines
07 4760 7407