Top 5 Reasons Why Pillar Drill Injured the Crew

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What Happened / Narrative:

The injured party was in the process of manufacturing a metal blank for a pipe on the vessels hot water system, the pipe was to be manufactured using a piece of 2mm metal plate. Part of the process of manufacture would include the requirement to drill a small hole (6mm) at one end of the plate. For this operation, it was decided to use the workshop pillar drill, it was whilst drilling the metal plate the drill bit became stuck. This then forced the metal plate out of the drill vice, when the operator reached up to stop the machine the metal plate that was stuck to the drill bit dislodged, flew off the drill bit impacting the left arm of the injured party.

Why Did it Happen / Cause:

  1. The task had not been properly risk assessed by the Injured Party.
  2. The injured party selected the wrong tool for the job, displaying poor judgement.
  3. The vice holding the metal work had not been sufficiently tightened.
  4. The speed of the drill had not been adjusted for drilling metal.
  5. The injured party was not wearing his PPE Correctly.

Corrective Actions Taken / Recommendations:

There were no time constraints on this job, the task had not been sufficiently assessed by the injured party. Instead of locating and setting up the correct tool for the job it was an attempt to save time and effort by using the pillar drill. Not operating the drill in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions and approved code of practice.

Preventative actions to be taken:

  1. All vessels to check their risk assessment for the use of power tools and ensure that they include all workshop bench tools.
  2. This Safety Alert to be discussed with all crew and reported back to the company through the monthly safety meeting by both crews.

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Source: IMCA

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