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Oil and gas workers in Texas face serious hazards at work

Many of our readers either work in an industrial environment or know someone who does. This field is immensely popular in this state, and offers great work opportunities for employees as the so-called drilling boom continues to open up new jobs for people across the state. However, these employees may be finding that they are working in an extremely dangerous job.

In recent years, the number of accidents that have happened on drilling sites in Texas has increased substantially. And with this increase comes more workers who are injured or killed. In fact, more industrial workers in the oil and gas fields were killed in 2012 than in the previous 10 years and thousands of people have been injured in serious accidents. This is certainly an upsetting trend, but so is the fact that only a small number of these industrial accidents are investigated by safety advocates and agencies.

According to a recent report in The Houston Chronicle, about 65 people who worked for oil or gas companies in Texas were killed in a work-related accident in 2012 and 18,000 people suffered a catastrophic injury as a result of their job. Workers lost limbs, suffered serious abrasions and were crushed or burned while working. These are not exactly minor injuries. These are the kinds of injuries that make it impossible for a person to continue working for that day, the week or indefinitely. In the blink of an eye, an industrial worker's life and career can be put in jeopardy.

Due to the nature of the jobs in these fields, workers may be confronted with more dangerous situations than other people. However, that does not mean that these accidents and injuries are inevitable. There are many steps that should be taken on industrial job sites that can prevent accidents and protect workers. If these efforts fail or are never put in place, there may be a negligent party to hold accountable. But even if negligence did not contribute to an accident, it can still be important for victims to pursue the financial benefits that may be available through workers' compensation. This money can provide injured workers and their families with the financial support they may desperately need after a serious incident.

Source: The Houston Chronicle, "Pain of oil boom: top Texas firms in oilfield accident claims," Lise Olsen, Feb. 22, 2014

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