Ask Texas oil workers and you'll hear it from them: hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is the bogeyman in drilling. More than just offensive to the nostrils with its rotten-egg odor, hydrogen sulfide is extremely toxic, highly flammable, and very corrosive to metal. Sadly, it also causes permanent debilitation and fatalities in the oilfields every year.
Welcome to the rig floor, where more oilfield accidents happen than any other location on the drilling rig. Roughnecks on the rig floor are some of the most prone to injury, positioned next to the moving drillstring, using heavy tongs and fast-moving spinning chains, heaving the slips, and working around the rotary table. Here are some of the major hazards roughnecks and floorhands face when on the rig floor.