The oil and gasoline industry demands a lot from its refinery workers. Oil and gas refineries employ hard-working, dedicated refinery workers who are constantly working with hazardous substances under stressful conditions, often over long periods of time. The upside for many is the pay; according to Chron.com and Glassdoor.com, refinery workers average between $60,290 and $75,620 in hourly wages per year. The downside? Many things can go wrong in this kind of work environment and accidents frequently happen. In the last two weeks alone, two contractors were injured in an industrial accident near a Houston refinery, one impaled by a pipe, and 21 workers were injured by a secondary blast trying to contain an earlier blaze that broke out the day before.
Many oil and gas workers have sustained brain injuries, spinal cord injury, second- and third-degree burns, and other severe personal injuries as a result of on-the-job hazards at refineries. You can imagine how refinery blasts can cause burn injuries, but how do they cause brain or spinal injury? Severe explosions can lift workers from their feet, launching them against walls, equipment, or other hard surfaces. Or, falling or flying debris can strike workers, breaking bones and damaging internal organs, the spinal cord, and the brain. Workers can also suffer from contusions, lacerations, amputations, and respiratory issues.
So, what do you do if you or a loved one is injured while working at a refinery? Contact a personal injury lawyer, immediately. Here’s why:
A personal injury attorney will evaluate your case and perform their own investigation of whether or not there were unsafe working conditions, inadequate safety training, faulty equipment and/or other negligence issues that might have contributed to your injury. We will demand that your employer report your serious injury to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), and that they retain and do not destroy any footage, work logs, or other evidence of the circumstances surrounding your injury.
If the employer is found responsible for your or your loved one’s injuries, you and/or your family may receive compensation for one or a combination of the following:
- Current and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of companionship; loss in quality of life
- Funeral expenses
An experienced attorney will know what steps to take to handle your case with the best outcome in mind. This can be beneficial when your injuries are severe and you’ve got hundred of thousands or more in medical bills to pay; but hiring an attorney can be especially valuable when the employer disputes the details of the accident and denies liability for your injuries – and this happens more than you’d expect.
In one of the more recent well-publicized refinery accidents a Houston, Texas man sued Husky Energy, Inc. and Superior Refining Company LLC over injuries he says he sustained through their negligence, leaving him with “permanent and severe injuries” according to his complaint filed in the U.S. District Court in Madison, Wisconsin. His attorneys argue the refinery conducted “extra hazardous and/or ultrahazardous and abnormally dangerous activities” and that they “failed to exercise due care in the maintenance and monitor of the Husky Superior Refinery so as to prevent fires, explosions, or other harm to individuals…”
Don’t let negligent oil and gas companies take advantage of you in your time of need. If you or a loved one has been injured in a refinery accident, please contact an attorney. Refinery Injury Attorney Alex R. Hernandez, Jr. is standing by to assist you; don’t hesitate to call our office for a free consultation at 1-888-HDZLAW-8