What can be done to address health concerns? What have others done?



Activities that can serve to protect the safety of project workers and the community include:

  • siting well pads as far away from residences and water wells as possible
  • pressure testing of blowout prevention equipment prior to production
  • following best practices and industry guidance for well construction and maintenance, particularly for well casing
  • providing safety training for workers on proper equipment maintenance and practices to prevent blowouts and spills
  • engaging in emergency planning in which operators meet with emergency room staff and local first responders to review emergency response plans and provide the information on the chemicals used at the project site
  • conducting joint trainings and drills for hazardous materials (hazmat) incidents with operators, emergency room departments, fire departments, and other first responders
  • assessing local health care and emergency response capacity and helping to improve capacity where needed
  • providing driver training programs, along with safety controls such as speed monitors, road risk maps, driver drug testing, stringent rules regarding shift lengths and proper rest, and routine vehicle maintenance and inspection 1 (see Box 9. Case Study:  Driver Safety)


  1. Ian Urbina, “Deadliest Danger Isn’t at the Rig but on the Road,” The New York Times (May 14, 2012)