Watch as oilfield workers record a 120 mph twister tear through a camp.

Nine people were injured when a tornado touched down in an oilfield worker camp this week near Watford City, N.D. Oilfield workers caught the 120 mph twister ripping through the area toward the camp. Without a proper tornado shelter on site, workers were forced to find shelter in a pickup truck.   

This is not the first time a tornado has torn through an area that includes worker camps. When an EF5 tornado demolished much of Moore, Okla., last May, storm shelters and other safety measures were the talk of the industry.

Contractors working on drilling or mining sites can’t take chances when bad weather threatens. When oilfield worker camps are damaged or completely demolished, you lose money and production is minimized.

Some companies use trailer homes as on-site offices, but these facilities do not protect workers in severe weather. There’s no reason for oilfield workers to be forced to seek shelter in trucks when severe weather hits. Perhaps it’s time to invest in a storm shelter.

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Manufacturers are stepping up to build and design shelter or reconstructed tanks to protect workers.

Rather than sending crew workers home for the day if storms are forecasted, and on-site storm shelter means crews can stay safe until a weather threat passes and return to work immediately, which increases production and saves you money.

Use this tragic tornado incident as a reminder to keep employees safe. Remember, you potentially could be liable if something happens. Take the necessary steps to ensure the security of crew workers housed in remote camps.

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How can oilfield camps better protect workers during severe weather? Post a comment or email

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