Texas Accounts For 40% Of Oilfield Fatalities In The United States
4 March 2014No Comments
According to a recent investigation by the Houston Chronicle into the safety of Texas oilfields, 663 oilfield workers were killed in the United States between 2007 and 2012, and Texas alone accounted for 40% of those fatalities. Despite these alarming statistics, injury claims and public records of oilfield accidents show that, since the beginning of the onshore drilling and fracking boom in 2007, the federal government has done little to safeguard workers from devastating oilfield injuries and fatalities. If you have been injured in a Texas oilfield accident, or if you lost a loved one in a fatal job site accident, contact our knowledgeable attorneys at Bandas Law Firm today. Our law firm is located in Corpus Christi, and our lawyers have extensive experience protecting the rights of injured workers throughout Texas.
Fatal Oilfield Accidents on the Rise
The Chronicle investigation, which was published by the newspaper on February 22, revealed that in 2012 alone, 79 oilfield workers lost their limbs, 82 were crushed, 92 sustained burn injuries and 675 suffered broken bones in on-the-job accidents reported to insurance carriers. There were also 65 oilfield worker deaths in 2012, which is a ten-year high and represents an almost 60% increase from the previous year. Unfortunately, the newspaper article claims, federal authorities have failed for 22 years to establish safety standards and procedures for onshore oil and gas drilling, and that means that oilfield workers throughout the country are put at risk for work-related injuries and death every time they set foot on the job site.
Shoddy Regulation of Oil & Gas Industry
OSHA officials insist that they consider oilfield fatalities a high priority, and have pledged to review the oil and gas industry’s exemption on detailed safety rules. However, the Chronicle investigators found that OSHA has only 95 inspectors to oversee safety regulations for all work sites in Texas, and few have experience or training specifically associated with the oil or gas industries. “The truth is, offshore drilling is a lot safer than onshore,” says R. Dean Wingo, former Texas-based assistant regional administrator for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). “We see things in land drilling that were eliminated years ago offshore. A lot of outdated equipment is still being used, and OSHA doesn’t have any regulations specific to oil and gas at all.”
Contact Our Oilfield Accident Lawyers Today
In 2007, the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board determined that onshore oil fields are one of the most dangerous workplaces in the United States. “I don’t know that the picture has improved,” says Daniel Horowitz, the board’s managing director. “Obviously, the drilling boom has benefits for our country. But as drilling has expanded, there are potentially more new and inexperienced people coming in.” If you have suffered serious injuries in an oilfield accident in Corpus Christi, or elsewhere in Texas, consult our reputable lawyers at Bandas Law Firm to discuss your legal options. With our oilfield accident attorneys on your side, you can protect your legal rights and pursue financial compensation for your injuries and medical bills.