Luckily, no one was injured when a drilling rig explosion and fire blazed in South Texas this week. The drilling accident occurred on Wednesday night at a rig owned by Houston-based EOG Resources, Inc.
A spokesperson for the company said the fire continued to burn well into Thursday. Fire crews were on hand attempting to put out the flames. Authorities are trying to determine how the explosion and fire occurred, but it has been described as a “well control incident.”
Unfortunately, many fires and explosions at drilling rigs in Texas end up seriously injuring or killing workers. Because oil wells are inherently dangerous environments, it's extremely important for owners and operators to put safety first.
When safety rules and regulations are ignored, rig owners and operators can face liability in person injury lawsuits. Workers who are injured in these accidents may have the option to seek compensation under a negligence theory, a product liability theory or under workers' compensation laws.
Knowing where to turn after a workplace accident such as a drilling rig explosion or fire can be difficult. Many injured workers find the assistance of an experienced personal injury lawyer to be invaluable.
A personal injury lawyer can begin by investigating the accident to determine what went wrong and who, if anyone, is at fault. Then, the attorney can go through each of the worker's options.
In a workers' compensation case, it doesn't matter who was at fault for the accident. Even if the injured worker contributed, he or she may still be eligible for compensation to help with medical costs and other expenses relating to the accident.
Personal injury or product liability claims may be an option if negligence or a defective product contributed to the accident. However, there is a two-year statute of limitations for personal injury claims, so injured workers need to keep that in mind.
Source: My San Antonio, "No injuries reported in drilling rig accident," Aug. 29, 2013