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Working in a plant or refinery is dangerous work. Employees typically spend weeks apart from their families, and their work areas have risks of explosions and other hazards. Workplace accidents at a plant or refinery often result in serious and permanent injuries; tragically, in many cases, workers are even killed. At Zinda Law Group, PLLC, our injury attorneys have assisted numerous clients with these difficult claims.
Causes of Plant and Refinery Explosions
There are numerous reasons why a plant or refinery may have an explosion. Some of these are due to the negligence of others.
Plants and refineries house a number of dangerous, flammable chemicals and substances. For example, working in an oil refinery brings a risk of exposure to hydrogen sulfide, a flammable gas that can be fatal in high levels—often within seconds.
If a small fire breaks out in a plant or refinery, devastation can be fast, depending on where the fire is located. If the fire starts in an area that contains flammable substances, it can spread quickly and be difficult to extinguish.
Due to these hazardous working conditions, plants and refineries require employees to work with various types of equipment. If this equipment is not properly maintained and serviced, it is more likely to malfunction—such as by catching on fire or exploding under pressure.
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Regulations for Plants and Refineries
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is the government entity tasked with regulating safety in the workplace. It has provided dozens of regulations that plants and refineries must follow due to the dangerous nature of their work. In fact, in one report, OSHA noted that over a 15-year period, there were more catastrophic or fatal incidents involving highly hazardous chemicals in the petroleum refining industry than in any other industry held to the same standards. If OSHA regulations are not followed, plants and refineries are subject to fines and other penalties, especially if an explosion occurs.
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Types of Injuries that Occur at Plants and Refineries
There are hundreds of different injuries that may occur in a plant or refinery, including:
- Broken bones
- Cuts and lacerations
- Muscle tears
- Sprains and strains
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Permanent scarring
- Loss of limb
- Internal injuries
- Post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental health related injuries, such as depression and anxiety
- Repetitive injuries (from making the same movements every day)
In a plant or refinery explosion, it is much more likely that serious injuries or death will result. It is important to consult with an attorney experienced in these matters to ensure your rights are protected.
Filing a Plant or Refinery Explosion Claim
The claim you file after a plant or refinery explosion depends on your relationship with that plant or refinery. For example, if you worked for the plant or refinery and were within the scope of your employment at the time of the explosion, you would proceed with a workers compensation claim against your employer.
If you owned a business that was damaged by an oil spill or chemical leak after an explosion, you may need to file a negligence action against the plant or refinery.
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How Zinda Law Group Can Help
If you or a loved one has been injured in an explosion at a plant or refinery, the personal injury attorneys at Zinda Law Group have the experience, knowledge, and resources necessary to help you seek the full compensation you deserve. Call us today at 800-863-5312 for a free and confidential consultation about your case. Meetings with attorneys by appointment only.