Supervisor & Company Fined $105,000 for Drill Bit Incident
Workers at a diamond drill were attaching a drill bit to a casing. They used a pipe wrench to hold the drill bit in place and engaged the drill so that its hydraulic power threaded the casing onto the bit. As the casing was tightening, the wrench slipped and hit a worker, causing serious cuts and broken bones. The MOL found that the company had a policy forbidding the use of hydraulic power together with a pipe wrench. But workers didn’t know about the policy. The company pleaded guilty to failing to provide information and instruction to the workers on how to safely attach a drill bit to a casing and was fined $100,000. The supervisor present during the incident pleaded guilty to failing to ensure a safe procedure was used by workers attaching a drill bit to a casing and was fined $5,000 [Forage Orbit Garant Inc./Orbit Drilling Inc. and Michael Menard, Govt. News Release, June 5, 2012].