Oil and natural gas form below the surface and accumulate, creating rich subterranean mineral fields. Oil field workers must perform strenuous and unsafe tasks using the necessary equipment to obtain and process the oil.
Their work comprises drilling, oil extraction and production. It involves exposure to heavy machinery, moving vehicles and toxic chemicals. They must maintain pipelines and infrastructure regularly, sometimes requiring them to operate from daring heights. Oil field work is not only hazardous, but it can also be fatal.
What are the common causes of oil field injuries and death?
Aside from the risks associated with the oil field work, oil and gas industries sometimes require workers to meet impossible deadlines. They are performing dangerous duties while experiencing fatigue. North Dakota oil fields are becoming so deadly that an oil field worker dies every six weeks on average. Below are the more common causes of oil field injuries and deaths:
- Falls from heights
- Falling equipment and debris
- Fires and explosions
- Equipment malfunctions
- Transportation accidents
- Inhalation of toxic substances and fumes
- Contact injuries with heavy machinery
Oil field workers must also often deal with bad weather conditions. High winds, strong storms, severe sunlight and freezing temperatures make their challenging occupation even more dangerous. According to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the fatality rate for oil and gas field work is seven times higher than other industries.
Did you suffer from an oil field accident?
The North Dakota workers’ compensation system makes it difficult for injured oil field workers and their families to take legal action and get the compensation they deserve. Injured workers and families of victims who died from oil field work can pursue lawsuits against the oil extraction companies if their employer does not directly provide workers’ compensation. A personal injury lawsuit might be daunting, but you are not alone in this, and you have a right to recover damages for the pain and suffering the company should have prevented.