This paper examines the influence of sorbed gas type and pressure on the strength of coal. Particular attention is focused on the influence of gas type and pressures on drillability characteristics of coal and particle size distribution of drill cuttings. Drillability of coal has a strong bearing on the strength properties of coal. Based on fracture mechanics and mechanical rock cutting, weaker rocks are easier to drill and the drill cuttings produced are generally coarse in size. Accordingly a specially designed precision drill was used to drill coal samples under both normal atmospheric and confined gas pressure conditions. Indications of changes to coal strength as a result of increased sorbed gas pressure were examined by analysing the particle size distribution of the drill flushing. A laser controlled Malvern Mastersizer S particle size analyser with measuring range between 0.05 ��m and 900 ��m was used to study the particle size distribution. This paper demonstrates that there is a definite variation in the range of particle size distribution with particles obtained from drilling coal samples not subjected to gas pressures in comparison with those obtained from samples drilled under confined gas pressure. Gas types also have an influence. Higher proportions of coarse particles were produced when the confined gas was changed from CH4 to CO2. A change in the rate of drilling under varying confining pressure and gas type was also evident. The rate of drilling in air (at normal atmospheric conditions) was slower than at higher confining pressures. The highest drill rates were obtained with CO2 confinement.