Working on an oilfield is anything but a standard 9-5 job. It’s a job which calls for employees to do intense labor in dangerous conditions.
One wrong move can get one person seriously injured, or, it may be bad enough to cause an oilfield accident. You’ve probably heard of the damage oilfield accidents can do to the environment. But, such accidents can cause a big number of casualties and serious injuries for the people who work in oilfields!
The following are common causes of oilfield accident:
Slips and Falls
All it takes is one bad slip and fall to break a leg or dislocate a shoulder.
Depending on their severity, these kinds of injuries can cause an oilfield worker to lose their job due to the fact they’d be unable to work. Or, they’d at least be unable to work for quite some time.
Neither outcome is ideal. But, an oilfield injury lawyer can help those who suffer from slips and falls to get back on their feet.
Sometimes an injury occurs not because an employee has slipped and fallen, but because a piece of equipment has fallen on them!
Oil rigs and oilfield equipment are often are intricate structures. They need to be well-maintained and inspected for everything to work well. If just one screw is loose, or one piece of the structure begins to rust, everything is in danger.
This may not sound like much of a big deal until a huge beam or a heavy piece of equipment comes crashing down on someone as they work. The impact of falling equipment may also hurt a person who is working nearby.
Failing to Check Equipment Levels
The best way to prevent falling equipment is to check and double-check that everything is in place as it should be. But, there are many more things to inspect on an oilfield.
The pumps and valves on oil rigs and rig equipment need to stay within certain pressure levels. When the levels are too high, there’s an increased chance of rupture or explosion which could injure everyone on the oilfield site. When the levels are too low, this could be a sign that something is leaking, which presents other life-threatening dangers.
Either way, one of the worst things to do is to not check equipment levels on a regular basis. It’s important to track these throughout the day to ensure the safety of everyone on site.
The pressure levels on certain pieces of equipment may sometimes fluctuate or register incorrect values due to an equipment malfunction. There are all kinds of failures or equipment malfunctions that can happen on an oilfield.
As such, it becomes the responsibility of the companies responsible to check for, report, and repair anything which seems off. Failing to do so could result in many serious injuries.
Ignoring Industry Regulations
There are industry regulations in place to help ensure the safety of everyone working on an oilfield. Unfortunately, some companies and “people at the top” care more about a profit than the safety of their hard workers.
It’s a harsh truth to come to terms with, especially when you or a loved one is the one facing the consequences of ignored regulations. Overlooking specific industry guidelines can cause everything from a burn to a cut to a broken body part. In the worst of cases, a person may suffer an injury to the head or even death.
Negligence of Shutdown Procedures
When equipment readings and industry regulations are taken seriously, the best thing to do is shut down an oilfield operation. When someone on the ground or higher up in the company decides to continue the operation, things can get really bad. This is a sure-fire way for people to get hurt.
Shutdown procedures are in place to ensure all employees on an oilfield work in safe conditions and go home in the same condition they arrived. When shutdown procedures are neglected, there’s no guarantee that everyone makes it home.
Poor Training Procedures
Another risk which contributes to oilfield accidents is poor training.
Sometimes, an accident happens not because a person decided to overlook the red flags, but because the worker didn’t know what to look for in the first place, or was being asked to do someone else’s job.
The safe, efficient function of an oil field is something companies need to take responsibility for. This applies to those who train them and handle the other operations of the business.
Each worker on an oilfield needs to have the knowledge to do his or her job and tell when something is wrong. This creates an environment where everyone is looking out for one another by keeping their eyes peeled for something that looks off.
The faster an issue is identified, the sooner it can be fixed and the less likely an injury will occur. It sounds simple, but it’s shocking how many oilfield accidents happen every year.
How to Recover from Oilfield Accidents
Oilfield accidents don’t just affect the employees who get injured. They create serious problems for oil companies to face, and more importantly, they change the way of life for the loved ones of those injured.
Everything stops when you pick up the phone to hear your loved one has been in an oilfield accident. Their well-being becomes your main priority, and taking care of them ends up taking up a big part of your life, too.
Thankfully, help is available. If you or a loved one has recently suffered serious injuries or tragically killed in an accident, you may be entitled to compensation, contact our experienced Houston oilfield accident lawyers at Morrow & Sheppard LLP to get the legal support you both need.