Future Skills

What do you think will be the key skills needed by people in the future explosives sector?

10 answers

  1. Answered by Mark Ribbands

    The way things are going with over-regulation of private contractors and the decimation of our storage capacities, burger-flipping perhaps? 🙂

  2. Answered by Sidney Alford

    Complying with the “safety” requirements imposed by the HSE whose inspectors all too often show a better knowledge of regulations related to explosives than acquaintance with the substances and little concept of probabilities.
    It is easier to impose regulations than to cancel them.

  3. Answered by Anthony Grizaard

    I don’t think we are as over regulated (yet) as Europe.

    I am still working on an old fashioned mine where we drill holes, blow them up, dig the blasted dirt, crush it, send it by rail to port , load it on a ship and send it away. So we still employ blast crew, shotfirers, drillers, drill fitters, MMU operators, mine engineers, plannners surveyors (soon to be drone pilots?) geologist etc etc.

    Automation is the next cab (Uber) off the rank, we are already running automated trucks and drill rigs are next. Whilst we operate machines they will break down so the trades are still in demand as will be automation experts.

    So future direction for us I think will be centred around automation.

    So if you want a job in mining, emigrate.

  4. Answered by Karl Petrovic

    Defence – more focus on the development of insensitive munitions, as well as, explosive substances that can handle increased electromagnetic environments.

    Infrastructure – As global infrastructure grows and ages, there may be opportunities to increase skills related to precise demolition using explosives.

  5. Answered by Martyn Sime

    The skills may change but the fundamentals of what do I have to do to make/not make this material that has been designed to burn/deflagrate/detonate behave in the way it was designed to behave will remain.

    My experience as one of those ‘over regulators’ is that understanding of the fundamentals of explosives science and engineering that allow reasoned judgements to be made when applying those skills, especially when a system moves out of steady state or deviates from the expected, remain fairly scarce.

    As Anthony notes there are a lot less permissions required in the UK when compared to the rest of the world and regualtors probably spend a lot less time on dutyholders sites, requiring a lot less paperwork than they do elsewhere. Perhaps that is because much of the sector in the UK makes a real effort to comply with the comparatively limited set of goal setting regulations?

    Maybe the most important skills are the abilities to adapt, cooperate, think and innovate?

    • Anthony Grizaard

      Hi Martyn,
      I am in Australia and was referring to UK as Europe. Sorry if i didn’t make myself clear.

  6. Answered by Malc Ingry

    In my opinion the biggest problem facing us in the U.K. in the future

    The amount of practical knowledge going out of the industry due to a aging workforce in most industries using explosives.

    Especially in Mining, Tunnelling and Demolition.

    People being trained to use Explosives in the above industries is not happening.

    Also no clear understanding from The Authorities and Clients the qualifications required if any in some of the more obscure industries using explosives in the U.K.

    The future I believe of experienced people will reach a stage that we will have to rely on people from overseas to fill these gaps.

    So I see this as the biggest threat to use of Explosives in the U.K.

  7. Answered by Alan Morley

    Andrew, That is a huge question and obviously depends on which part of the sector people are working in. For all a basic knowledge of explosives, their function, safety, transport and storage regulations.
    The technology relevant to their sector.
    An appreciation of developing technologies.
    Skills appropriate to their sector.
    This sounds like a perfect topic for what I would call a brain storming.

  8. Answered by G C Sen

    I think all areas requiring answers have been already highlighted. Now somebody has to screen them and pick up the salient points.
    Good luck!

  9. Answered by Andy Oppenheimer

    On the C-IED side, may i dare an add to this? Probably already known : – coping with growing range and variety of improvised devices and homemade explosive mixes by terrorists and extremists who may use commonly available not banned materials


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