Chris Jones picked up the award for Lead Driller of the Year, which recognises those who have made ‘an outstanding contribution to the British drilling industry.’
With over 30 years’ geotechnical experience, including a decade at Fugro, Jones has wide-ranging expertise in all forms of drilling and borehole testing for site investigation. He was praised for his exemplary project management, team leadership and mentoring skills as senior lead driller on major Fugro contracts – from HS2 and Crossrail in the UK to energy projects in Africa, Canada and Azerbaijan.
Jones also played a role in site investigations for Sirius Minerals’ polyhalite development in North Yorkshire, which saw Fugro take the ‘Highly Commended’ runner–up award for Industry Excellence.
Judges were impressed by Fugro’s innovative and collaborative work with the client to investigate shaft and cavern locations and undertake tunnel route characterisation for a proposed 37-kilometre-long mineral transport system.
The geotechnical programme involved the drilling of vertical and inclined boreholes to depths of more than 550 metres, and a programme of in situ testing to collect hydrogeological, ground condition and ground engineering data to refine the geological model. Together with extensive geophysical surveys the results will help the client de-risk the tunnel design and construction.
Fugro was also recognised for its outstanding safety performance at the Sirius site, reporting zero first aid case or worse incidents despite continuous 24/7 working on open moorland, at times in wintry conditions.
The awards were presented in front of an audience of leading drilling companies, geotechnical practitioners and clients at the BDA’s annual celebratory dinner held in Sheffield in October.