The Consequences of Refinery Accidents Oil refineries have become an imperative part of America’s economy as they provide high-paying employment and produce fuel for cars, homes and businesses. A refinery job requires skilled employees to take crude oil and refine it into different types of products like gasoline, liquefied petroleum gas, diesel fuel and kerosene as well as other products that people use every day. Unfortunately, industrial plant employees face many dangers including death and injuries. When a petrochemical plant accident occurs, the results can be extensive as workers, nearby companies and communities may be damaged. If you have been involved in a work related accident, consider contacting an industrial accident attorney to protect your rights and receive appropriate financial compensation. Industrial Accidents Industrial plants have a long history of accidents:
- In 1947, a ship loaded with combustible freight blew up in Texas City, Texas, creating a 15-foot tidal wave and caused two other boats in the area to explode. The blast crushed multiple structures in the community and the number of victims totaled 581 dead and 3,500 injured.
- A T2 Laboratories chemical plant explosion in Florida on December 20, 2007 killed four people and injured 14. The fiery discharge caused debris to fly several stories into the air. According to a spokesperson the plant manufactures a gasoline additive know as ecotane, which reduces tailpipe emissions.
- The BP oil spill is another industrial accident that took the lives of employees. In fact, 11 workers died during the incident. In addition, the spill caused an immense amount of crude oil to be released into the Gulf of Mexico, and the oil clean-up effort is ongoing.
- On April 17, 2013 the Exxon Mobil refinery plant in Beaumont, Texas experienced a fire as the result of scheduled maintenance on a heat exchanger. At least 12 contract employees were injured. Three of the employees receiving critical burns to a portion of their bodies and others experienced broken bones.
Despite modern technology and numerous safety advancements, industrial accidents continue to happen. For instance, the Exxon Mobil refinery plant in Beaumont, Texas, was the site of a fire that resulted in injuring 12 people. In addition, the recent Texas fertilizer plant explosion caused the death of 15 people and injured approximately 200 workers and residents. The blast also damaged and destroyed numerous structures in the area. Each state requires employers to abide by its regulations along with federally established guidelines, which are in place to avoid dangerous work conditions. Unfortunately, some companies do not follow the safety rules, and as a result, tragedies occur. Employees who work with highly combustible products or toxic chemicals should be especially cautious and review the state and federal procedures personally to make sure that they are working in a safe work environment. Keep in mind that life-threatening injuries can happen from a machine malfunction, toxic chemical spill or explosion. When accidents occur, workers need the services of a refinery accident attorney because the company they work for will want to protect themselves and may not consider the best interest of the injured workers. About Industrial Accident Afflictions During a petrochemical plant accident, workers may suffer from numerous injuries including back or shoulder pain along with neck discomfort, bruises or cuts. Other afflictions may consist of brain injuries, loss of a limb or spinal damage. If employees are involved in a chemical plant accident, then they may wind up with persistent headaches, nausea and insomnia as well as anxiety, numbness and trouble breathing. When defective machinery causes an injury, it can be severe. For instance, employees can suffer from an amputation or a deep cut. Injured workers may lose their source income, and serious afflictions may result in lifelong pain. Physically harmed employees should consider contacting an attorney who specializes in industrial accidents to recoup lost income, compensation for pain and suffering and full payment for medical expenses to ensure the financial security of their family. Legal Compensation After an industrial plant accident causes people to become injured or is responsible for damage to surrounding structures, affected individuals or businesses may be eligible for financial compensation. If a company refuses to pay damages for injuries or property destruction, an industrial accident lawyer needs to be contacted to protect the rights of those who were harmed. Often, big companies have their own legal team to avoid paying anymore than they have to. Therefore, it is essential to hire an experienced attorney who is not afraid to take on a large corporation or insurance company that is only worried about their bottom line. Conclusion There are many laws in place to keep workers safe, but when an industrial accident occurs, be sure to contact an industrial accident attorney to protect your rights.