If you or someone you love has been involved in an oil field or offshore accident, please accept our deepest sympathies. We know that going through these life altering events is a massive burden. As you know, extracting petroleum, refining it, and transporting it all create dangerous, yet necessary jobs. It is common for oil and gas workers to have to use high-powered machinery with petroleum and petroleum products under extreme temperatures and high pressures, which can lead to an oilfield or maritime injury. While the opportunities for workplace accidents are everywhere, this does not mean oil companies are exempt from adhering to safety regulations and standards.
The Alarming Frequency of Catastrophic Oil and Gas Accidents
According to reporting from the nonprofit organization The Center for Public Integrity, between 2000 and 2008, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited companies in the oil & gas industry for 10,873 violations. Of those 10,000 plus violations, 64% were “serious violations” meaning there was an increase in the chance of death or serious physical harm for workers.
Between 2008 and 2017, the same group found 1,566 workers were killed in oil and gas jobs. In 2019, this number grew dramatically to 5,333 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Despite these disturbing figures, the average fine for a fatal accident was only $16,813 per worker. Contrast that with the $55,616,285 spent in 2021 alone by the same oil and gas industry on lobbying politicians in D.C. When you take a look at the average fine per worker versus how much the industry donates to politicians, it’s easy to see why oil and gas companies are able to get away with so much.
It is also far too common to hear about OSHA citing oil and gas companies for violations only to have the violations contested, even when a tragic death could have been prevented. Oil and gas industry groups such as the American Petroleum Institute claim the industry has a low injury rate. But, the former Assistant Secretary of OSHA says this is because they often don’t report their injuries; and, that since they have a very high fatality rate, it’s simply not possible they have a low injury rate. The resistance to regulation creates real dangers for workers, including:
- Exposure to harmful chemicals
- Being struck by or caught in heavy machinery
- Fires and explosions
- Falling from ladders
- Falling from platforms
- Falling from scaffolding
- Workplace vehicle accidents
- Evacuation accidents
This set of circumstances gives oil and gas workers and their families few options when the worst happens. If the regulators can’t or won’t do their jobs, and the politicians to continue to look away, there remains only one available alternative solution: hire an oil field accident lawyer or offshore accident lawyer.
Maritime Injury Law
Offshore accidents are governed by a unique set of laws, most of which are federal laws that the majority of lawyers never have to deal with. Only an experienced offshore injury lawyer will have the experience and knowledge necessary to litigate claims falling under the Jones Act, Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act, Death on the High Seas Act, Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, and more. The negligence threshold and statute of limitations aspects can vary substantially from case to case when a worker is injured or killed while working offshore, so be sure to talk to an experienced maritime lawyer about the unique facts of your situation before time runs out unexpectedly.
Why Hire an Oilfield Injury Lawyer or Maritime Injury Attorney?
Your company may have already begun investigating the incident, as soon as it happened. Their goal is to be ready for any investigations headed their way, either from a lawsuit or the government. In order to give you the best advantage, no time should be wasted in gathering evidence to protect you and your family’s interest. Oil and gas accident cases are complex and will require a lot of time, energy and resources. Our team of attorneys is well equipped to handle this task, and the more time they have to investigate, organize and prepare there, the better for you.
Exposing the truth and using the heat of lawsuit is the best way to hold these oil and gas giants accountable. Oil and gas companies have deep pockets and smart lawyers. These lawyers have the single goal of protecting their company’s profits. In order to win against them, you need an attorney who has a proven record of defeating oil companies.
The filing deadline determines the last opportunity you have to file a lawsuit. This is known as the Statute of Limitations. The statute of limitations for a workplace injury case is typically two years in Texas. Once the deadline is passed, it may cost you all of your legal options. Which is why we highly recommend you contact us today. Consultations are always 100% free. You never pay a fee, until we win.