Objects falling from structures are still responsible for an alarming number of casualties within the oil & gas industry. Unfortunately, the problem is common to everyone in the industry, across all regions, sectors and disciplines. Everyone knows the potential cost of a dropped object. It’s not just about equipment damage and lost production—it’s about life.


Dropped Object Prevention Scheme DROPS: An industry-wide forum that monitors and advises on dropped object incidents and prevention.



Dropped Objects Prevention Scheme (DROPS)

The ultimate goal is to deliver a second-nature dropped objects prevention strategy across our industry. DROPS is essentially a Global Working Group, comprising 200 operators, contractors, service companies and industry bodies, who share the commitment and enthusiasm for the common goal of preventing dropped objects. Allrig is an active member of the working group.

Incorporating DROPS into operations

Thanks to the work of DROPS, increasingly more companies are aware of the issues associated with dropped objects and are incorporating DROPS surveys in their inspection programs. However, not everyone is. By performing regular DROPS surveys, companies can better prevent objects from falling by analyzing and seeing where in the structure objects are likely to drop from.

Knowledge is key to prevention

Stewart Moran, Allrig’s DROPS instructor, and rope access technical authority (IRATA), points out that “companies don’t always have enough knowledge about DROPS to keep themselves and others safe. Drilling companies need to perform more regular DROPS surveys on their structures.” Stewart has over 17 years of experience working at height with tools and equipment all over the world, “I believe if you see a potential dropped object you own it. Don’t just walk away,we should always be risk assessing the potential hazards; Be proactive,” adds stewart.

According to Stewart, the solution for companies is education. "It is the key to prevention". For even the most seasoned personnel in the industry, a DROPS training can be a bit of a wake-up call. It’s essential to get the training to know what can happen if an object falls, and to know how to prevent it from happening.



An example of poorly maintained lifting equipment


DROPS awareness training

The DROPS training and awareness program is developed by the DROPS organization. The training begins with being able to identify what a dropped object is. Stewart explains: “For example, many people do not know that a light fixture is a potential dropped object, or that a mobile phone in your coverall pocket is considered as a potential dropped object. Also, there are different categories of dropped objects. You have static objects— static dropped objects that fall from its current position, and there are dynamic objects, or objects that fall as a result of a force.”



DROPS training


Theory and practical know-how

The DROPS training offers a perfect blend of both theory and practical know-how. According to Stewart, during the training, “practical examples of actual dropped object incidents are shared. Videos, sometimes graphic, are also played to show what happens when it all goes wrong.”

After the training, participants know exactly what a dropped object or potential dropped object is, and understand the impact an object falling from height can have on personnel and machinery. Participants also learn the importance of the terms safety securing (an additional mechanism for securing the equipment to the main structure eg Nets lanyards wire sling’s) and  Secondary retention (a method for securing the primary fixing to prevent loss of clamping force eg. Locking washers ,wire safety pins etc). on everything which can potentially corrode and fall, and why tools and equipment should be attached to suitable lanyards when working at height. Those attending the training will also grasp why inspection and maintenance of all potential dropped objects is so important.

Would you like to know more?

Would you like to know more about the DROPS training program? Please send an email to Allrig’s experienced Dropped Object Awareness trainer Stewart Moran and discover more about what we can do to help keep your employees safe and secure at all times.


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