Abstract Drifts are the nerve centre of underground mining operations. They provide essential communication between the shafts and the stoping areas and have varying dimensions and inclinations. In view of their strategic importance in the overall safety, economy and productivity of mines, empirical guidelines to estimate the drift blast design parameters have been described in this paper. The skill of the driller and the constant attention of the superviser to the accuracy achieved are essential ingredients to the successful application of these guidelines. The extra time spent in planning and accurately drilling the holes pays off in the form of higher advance, “bootleg” free round and the minimum damage to the back and sides of the drift. The application of this computerized empirical approach to practical situations has been described with an example.