Keep Oil and Gas Workers Safe with Active RFID

RFID Personnel Safety

Protect tagged personnel with the most reliable mustering and real-time safety system available

Personnel safety and protection in remote and dangerous work environments, such as complex and hazardous oil and gas platforms or vessels, is paramount to any reputable petroleum and gas company seeking to protect its most important assets – its people.

Whether operating on a deep-sea oil drilling rig, at a pumping station, in a gas plant, needing to know where everyone is in the event of a fire, or simply ensuring that only certain authorized people are in a hazardous area, you need to know where your people are at all times, and that they are out of harm’s way.

The risk of poor personnel safety

According to the ILO, a worker dies every 15 seconds from a work-related accident, and 153 more are hurt. That’s 317 million accidents on the job annually, with many resulting in extended absences from work. U.S. fire departments alone respond to an average of 37,000 fires at industrial properties each year,[1] and the economic burden of poor occupational safety and health practices is estimated at 4% of global GDP each year.[2]

In 2014, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reported multiple oil and gas-related fatalities in the United States. What’s more, OSHA revealed that the oil and gas fatality rate was seven times greater than the rate for all U.S. industries from 2003-2010, despite safety procedures and safeguards being in place.[3]

Anything from fires to extreme temperatures, catastrophic events to major explosions, can make work in the oil and gas industry extremely dangerous. Highly-effective personnel safety solutions are therefore one of the most important safety measures for your high-risk oil and gas environment.

Existing personnel safety programs and initiatives can deliver mixed results. Organizations might still be using manual check-in procedures when it comes to worker tracking, but this is often lacking in terms of response times in an emergency or crisis. Bar codes and readers are another option, but these can only track personnel entering an area and do not allow for an accurate location in the event of an emergency.

Leveraging active RFID technology to locate and secure your workers

On an oil or gas operation, you need to ensure worker safety while driving operational efficiency gains. This means identifying, locating, and securing your workers across multiple locations.

Active RFID technology can be leveraged to address these requirements, monitoring your workers within a particular location – and to specific floors, rooms and to within a few feet if needed. A challenge is ensuring that you can still track workers as they move between different platforms and floatels on a rig – and that the system is accurate and fast enough to keep your people moving around without any hold-ups.

For this reason, the use of active RFID tags worn around the neck or on a wrist can be used to provide real-time visibility of workers – when they reach a platform, where they go, how often they use the various facilities, and even if they try to enter a secured room without the appropriate permissions.

Oil platforms are subject to harsh environmental conditions such as snow, water, sand and metal, and the Personnel Safety solution equipment needs to be designed accordingly.

An advanced RFID-based personnel safety system has been shown to improve operational effectiveness by accurately pinpointing personnel in hazardous work zones and emergency evacuations. When a staff member presses the duress button, they receive an audio/visual confirmation on the tag that their SOS message has been received and that help is on the way. 

An effective Personnel Safety solution should integrate with your other systems to ensure that your workers’ safety is part of your overall facility strategy.

Ensure real-time safety for personnel in oil and gas environments

GuardRFID’s Personnel Safety solution delivers an advanced, real-time employee mustering and lone worker monitoring system for workers in industrial settings, such as oil and gas, and including support for hazardous (EX-rated) or remote environments.

The solution is scalable from a simple automated mustering roll-call that identifies tagged personnel as they enter a mustering area, up to a fully-featured system that locates employees on a site map in the event of a distress call or mustering event. The intrinsically-safe RFID solution includes our small, lightweight, durable and wearable RFID tags designed to withstand the toughest environments and incorporating user-activated push buttons – this allows employees to be quickly located and to summon help if needed.

Personnel are assigned an active RFID tag with optional call button support – this can be attached to hardhats, worn on a wristband or attached to a lanyard. The solution uses GuardRFID’s trusted suite of infrastructure hardware and AllGuard enterprise software to provide real-time location monitoring, activate alarms and mustering support. If personnel press the call button on their tag, the active RFID tag raises an alarm in the AllGuard software. When the alarm is received in real-time, the software can identify where the worker is and send help to investigate the emergency situation.

To discover the most advanced personnel visibility and mustering system for your oil and gas environment, contact us


[1] ResearchGate – https://www.researchgate.net/publication/331636136_Investigation_into_the_relationship_between_fatal_work_accidents_national_income_and_employment_rate_in_developed_and_developing_countries.

[2] Ibid.

[3] EHS Today – https://www.ehstoday.com/safety/safety-practices-oil-and-gas-industry-infographic.