ground investigation drill rig

SOCOTEC’s Ground
Investigation Team
Adopts New Data
Storage Method
for Drill Rigs

Tue 05/04/2021 - 15:54

SOCOTEC’s Ground Investigation team has adopted a new data storage method which allows information on its drill rigs to be stored in a digital format.

The team owns and operates a number of drill rigs, all of which must be compliant with both the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations (PUWER) and the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER). At its most basic, compliance is adhered to in the form of an annual thorough examination (LOLER) and by ensuring that the operator has access to the operator’s manual (PUWER). 

Previously, SOCOTEC would mobilise each drill rig with a ‘rig pack’, comprising a weatherproof plastic envelope that contained laminated copies of the relevant certificates and a hard copy of the manual. This method had a number of clear disadvantages, from the difficulty of finding a suitable location to store the rig pack to the potential of damage to the envelope and its contents. There was also the potential for the pack to be misplaced, or of parties neglecting to update the envelope’s contents as certificates were renewed.

The Ground Investigation team researched existing technology to identify whether information could be stored in a digital format, with QR codes selected as the most suitable option. Subsequently, all SOCOTEC drill rigs now have their own unique QR code which, when scanned, directs the user to a domain holding all the relevant data relating to that item of plant. This includes:

  • In-date certificates of thorough examination – to ensure compliance with LOLER and to aid internal and external auditors
  • Rig datasheet – to allow quick access for temporary works designers
  • Recent service history – to satisfy clients of SOCOTEC’s ongoing preventative maintenance programme
  • Operator’s manual – for operator reference and compliance with PUWER
  • Original CE conformity – to demonstrate the province of the rig.

“SOCOTEC’s Ground Investigation team is constantly on the lookout for ways in which we can improve our customer service in a safe and commercially sensible manner, navigating the interface between regulatory compliance, client expectation, contractual obligation and operator efficiency,” said Gareth Mews, UK resources manager, Ground Investigation, SOCOTEC UK.

“Using QR codes has enabled us to achieve a simple yet effective means of storing information on our drill rigs, and the feedback we have received from both clients and our competitors since implementing this method has been overwhelmingly positive. We are now looking at ways in which to further develop the information that can be accessed via QR codes, including the potential use of training videos for specialist equipment.”

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