Propane Explosions Injury Lawyers in Austin
Propane is used by more than 14 million families, for a variety of reasons. Propane is used by furnaces, water heaters, dryers, cooktops, outdoor grills, fireplaces and generators. Many farmers use propane for grain dryers, irrigation pumps and standby generators. Business owners use propane for bus, taxi, delivery and other means of transportation. Restaurants and hotels also frequently use propane for cooking and heating purposes.
Propane is transported by pipeline or truck to storage facilities- the National Fire Protection Association provides guidelines for transportation. Once propane is inside of a house or facility, NFPA 54 (National Fuel Gas Code) provides safety instructions for the installation of propane. Other standards apply to handling propane.
The Danger of Propane
According to propaneexplosions.com, "Fires from propane gas grills and residential propane tank explosions are attributable to numerous personal injuries and deaths each year, and contribute to huge property losses. Statistics published by a division of FEMA called the U.S. Fire Administration, reveal that approximately 6,500 barbecue grill fires injure Americans annually in the U.S., and account for approximately $27 million dollars in property losses." As a result, several corporations encourage propane safety, including:
- Propane Education & Research Council
- National Fire Protection Association
- Propane Exceptional Energy
- Energy Partners
- National Propane Gas Association
- U.S. Energy Information Administration
Between 2003 and 2007, the U.S. fire department responded to approximately 1,170 home structure fires involving LP-gas. These fires caused 34 civilian deaths, 135 civilian injuries and resulted in $48 million in property damage.
Safety Guidelines to Follow
For safety purposes, a chemical odorant is added to propane, so that consumers are aware when a leak occurs. Experts advise that if you smell a leak, you should get everyone out of your home and to warn any neighbors. They also advise that consumers should not attempt to find the leak, repair the appliance, turn on or off light switches inside the home, use a telephone inside the home or light matches. Experts rather advise that you attempt to shut off the valves at the tank and call your propane supplier and fire department for help (using your phone away from your house). Experts also advise that propane gas detectors be installed as an additional safety measure. Maintaining your propane system is also imperative for your safety. General safety guidelines when using propane include:
- Only allow authorized personnel to make modifications to your propane system
- If a propane leak occurs, avoid going to areas such as your basement (propane vapors descend to the lowest points)
- Don't tamper with your system's supply lines
- Don't tamper with safety devices, regulators or storage tank fittings
- Don't use an open flame to test for propane leaks
- If you experience headaches, dizziness, vomiting, watery eyes or loss of muscular control, have your propane system checked
- Never use range burners as space heaters
- Never use propane heaters that are not intended for indoor use
- Never use a BBQ grill indoors
- Have a qualified technician test your propane appliances regularly
It is also recommended that consumers read guides supplied by the previously mentioned corporations. Different guidelines should be followed in different situations: it is helpful to know what steps to take if you have propane inside of your home, grill often or are planning for a large storm. Click here for some good, practical tips from Propane Exceptional Energy.
If you were injured in a propane explosion accident, after being treated by a health care professional, you should secure legal help. Most propane accidents involve "flash explosions" when someone is relighting a water heater or furnace, or in some events, when an individual turns on a light switch or static electricity causes a spark.
Flash explosions can cause serious injuries to exposed hands, arms, and the face. If a violation of a safety standard occurred, you could hold the propane installer, propane distributor or propane manufacturer liable. Contact Zinda Law Group today to receive the aid you are going to need throughout the days ahead from a Personal Injury Attorney.