A workplace explosion is a devastating event that can result in lifelong injuries, crippling financial losses, and substantial pain and suffering. If you or a loved one suffered an injury in a workplace explosion, an experienced Houston personal injury attorney can help protect your rights and obtain the compensation you deserve.
Employers have an obligation to keep their workers safe. Unfortunately, however, some companies fail to protect their employees from harm. Workplace accidents that should have been prevented cause thousands of injuries every year and sometimes result in death. At Kherkher Garcia, LLP, we fight for workers in Houston who were wrongly injured in workplace explosions so they can secure the financial recovery they need to get their life back.
Our Houston workplace explosion lawyers have the experience, skills, and resources needed to take on the companies and insurance companies liable for your injuries. Contact us today at (713) 333-1030 for a free consultation and to learn more about your rights and legal options. We’re ready to get to work.
The Types of Workplace Explosion Accidents in Texas
When explosions occur in the workplace, employees can be catastrophically injured or even killed. Employers have a legal obligation to take precautions and follow proper safety protocol to prevent explosions and other accidents from occurring. Keeping workers safe should be the number one priority at all times for employers, and when they fail to do so, they must be held accountable.
Although explosions can occur in nearly any type of workplace, certain industries are inherently more dangerous and prone to accidents and explosions than others. Houston and the state of Texas happen to be home to many such industries. Listed below are the most common types of explosions in the workplace in Texas:
Oil – Texas is well-known for oil production, and thousands of people work in oil refineries around the state. While these jobs are often high-paying and provide stable benefits, they also can be extremely dangerous. Because oil is a highly flammable substance, it must be treated with the utmost care. When safety measures are ignored or forgotten, the risk of explosions increases.
Natural gas – Throughout Texas, many businesses use natural gas for fueling and heating their buildings. Sometimes when underground pipes are poorly installed or become damaged, this can lead to a natural gas leak and a potential explosion.
Chemicals – If you work in an industry that uses hazardous chemicals, such as ammonium nitrate (a common ingredient in fertilizer), a great deal of caution must be exercised to minimize health risks to workers. When safety protocols are ignored, and hazardous and flammable chemicals are improperly stored, explosions can occur.
Malfunctioning or faulty equipment – When a piece of equipment used in the workplace is defective, it endangers the safety of workers. A product or device can be defective in three ways: in its design, in how it was manufactured, or in how it was marketed. No matter which way the equipment is defective, the results of equipment failure can result in significant injuries to the equipment operator or to other nearby workers.
Construction – Explosions and other accidents at construction sites are often the result of gas leaks, poor ventilation, improper storage of flammable materials, and/or a failure to train workers sufficiently.
Explosions at workplaces often lead to fires and the risk of severe injuries. Some of the most common injuries associated with explosions in the workplace are lacerations, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord trauma, broken bones, and severe burns. These types of injuries can be costly to treat and can diminish your quality of life significantly.
No matter the type of explosion that occurred at your workplace, you have rights. When employers fail to maintain a healthy and safe workplace, you should contact an experienced workplace explosion attorney in Houston. You can discuss your case with them, and they can advise you how you can file a claim for the compensation due to you for your injuries.
Workplace Explosion Statistics in Texas
It’s common knowledge that the oil and gas industry is immense in the state of Texas. Oil and gas account for 35% of the state’s economy. Texas leads the nation with the most oil refineries (47) and the greatest oil production. Texas also has some of the biggest chemical plants in the world. Although these industries boost the state economy and provide well-paying jobs to thousands of citizens, they do not come without risks.
Because Texas is home to so many inherently dangerous industries, it’s important that companies take every precaution they can to protect their workers and keep them safe from harm. While we’d like to think workplace safety is improving around the country, Texas continues to have the highest rate of workplace deaths in the nation and has a long history of workplace explosions.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, between 2013 and 2017, nearly 500 oil and gas extraction workers in Texas have been killed on the job, and many more were injured. These numbers are higher than the nation’s average.
Listed below are some facts about recent explosions in the state of Texas:
One of the worst explosions in the history of Texas occurred in 1947 when a ship loaded with ammonium nitrate exploded at the dock in Texas City and killed 576 people.
In 2013, another ammonium nitrate explosion occurred at the West Fertilizer Company storage facility in West Texas, killing 15 and injuring over 150 people. One hundred fifty buildings were also damaged or destroyed by the explosion and proceeding fire.
In July 2019, an explosion at an Exxon Mobile oil refinery in Houston injured at least 37 people. This was just one in a series of petrochemical explosions and fires in Texas that year.
In November of 2019, a butadiene manufacturing plant exploded and caught fire. Six thousand gallons of liquid vapor (primarily butadiene) were released into the air in the aftermath. Four workers were injured in the explosion, and residents reported respiratory problems and eye and throat pain caused by the smoke and cancerous chemicals released into the air. The lingering effects of the leak remain largely unknown.
Sadly, many of these deaths and injuries were the result of negligence and should have been prevented.
Frequently Asked Questions About Workplace Explosions in Houston
If you or a loved one was injured in an explosion at your place of work in Houston, understanding your rights and what steps to take in the aftermath of the accident can make the difference between winning or losing your claim. Having a Houston workplace accident attorney on your side is also extremely helpful.
Below are some common questions and answers about workplace explosions in Houston:
Contact the Personal Injury Trial Lawyers in Houston
At Kherkher Garcia, LLP, we believe that no matter what industry you’re in, your employer should provide a safe working environment for you and other workers. In 2021, no one should have to suffer because of the negligence of their employer.
That is why we represent our clients with compassion and empathy, and we’re not afraid to go to trial and fight for their rights in court. In fact, we’ve presented cases in over 900 jury trials and settled hundreds more outside of court.
If you or a loved one was injured in a workplace explosion, we can help you get the compensation you deserve. Give us a call now at (713) 333-1030 for a free consultation.