The Ohio Drilling and Blasting Conference was held from March 29-30, 2017, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Columbus, Ohio. The conference was sponsored by the International Society of Explosives Engineers (ISEE), the Ohio Aggregates & Industrial Minerals Association (OAIMA) and Ohio Coal Association and endorsed by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Mineral Resources Management.

More than 150 attendees participated in the event that featured 16 exhibit booths and a full day of presentations from explosives industry experts. This year’s program began with opening remarks from ISEE Past President John Capers and included topics covering regulatory updates, blasting project case history, cap rock reduction in a limestone quarry, blasting basics, driller and blaster communication, applying UAV technology to blasting economics and how to improve coal extraction using signature hole analysis. Attendees qualified for blasters training recertification hours from several states.

The highlight of the event included presentations of the Blaster of the Year Award and Driller of the Year awards. This year’s blaster recognition was awarded to David Lucas, Wampum Hardware. The driller award was presented to Dan Kourim, Oxford Mining.

The Ohio Drilling and Blasting Conference is a biennial event that serves as a platform for the exchange of the industry’s best practices. This year’s sponsors include the ISEE, Austin Powder, Nobel Insurance, and Dr. Edward J. Walter & Associates.