Dallas Oil Field Accident Lawyers
Putting 200 years of combined experience to work for oil field workers and families
Two of Texas’ most valuable resources are oil and natural gas. Most areas of Texas have produced, and still produce, these valuable energy sources. Due to the continuing demand for oil and natural gas, oil field jobs are in constant demand. Texas produces nearly 135 million barrels of crude oil every month –more oil than any other US state.
The good news that oilfield jobs are in demand is moderated by the fact that oilfield work is very dangerous work. Many workers, especially in the extraction sector, are at constant risk of death or a catastrophic injury. At Slack Davis Sanger, our Dallas oilfield accident lawyers fight for injured workers upstream and downstream. If you were hurt while working in the oil patch, or if your loved one died as a result of negligence, contact us today for help.
Which oil field jobs are the most dangerous?
Some of the many types of oilfield work that are dangerous include:
- This worker cleans the rig. Keeping the rig clean is essential to properly maintaining the rig. Most roustabout jobs are entry levels jobs.
- Tool pusher. The tool pusher is the man in charge of a rig. He monitors daily operations and is in charge of hiring and firing of crew personnel. He ensures that the rig has everything it needs to “conduct operations.”
- Derrick hand.This worker is responsible for the drilling fluid (called “mud”) used for drilling operations. Mud is used regularly during the drilling process. This worker also helps guide the drill stem when coming in and out of the drilling hole.
- Service operator.This worker operates well logging equipment. The logging equipment includes “electric, nuclear, sonic, other well logging tools, and pressure control equipment.”
- The roughnecks. These are workers are on the drilling platform connecting the drill stem when going in and out of the hole. They also do various jobs around the rig, such as maintenance work around the rig and the well bore. They may be the least skilled laborers, but are often the most likely to be injured.
- The oil driller.This is the person who runs the draw works, and drills the holes, and is responsible for the rough necks and the derrick hand. The driller “monitors drilling operations while the rig is drilling for oil.”
What are the main causes of oilfield accidents?
Oilfield extraction is regulated by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA). OSHA has regulations in place to reduce the number of accidents and injuries on a site, but tragedy can strike at any moment. Some of the most common causes of oilfield accidents include:
- Oil rig collapses. These structures are built to withstand the elements and the pressure of the oil. However, poor design, construction, or maintenance can lead to rig collapses. An oil field worker may become pinned under warped metal from the derrick or a broken piece from the rig could strike a worker in the head causing serious brain injuries.
- Blow-outs. Built-up pressure from the underground reservoir can force oil and gases up the well with enough force to damage the drilling rig and cause serious injuries to nearby roughnecks, drillers, derrick hands, and other workers. Blowouts have also been known to cause fatalities.
- Pipeline accidents. With more than 2.5 million miles of pipelines running through the U.S., there is always a chance of a toxic spill, a worksite injury, or an explosion. We uphold the rights of oil field workers injured in pipeline-related accidents.
- Struck-By/ Caught-In/ Caught-Between accidents. 3 out of 5 on-site oilfield and gas extraction deaths are caused by workers who are struck-by/caught-in/caught-between moving vehicles or equipment, falling equipment, and high-pressure lines, or other hazards.
- Explosions and Fires. Gases, hydrogen sulfide, vapors, and other flammable items can be released from “wells, trucks, production equipment or surface equipment such as tanks and shale shakers.” Some of the causes include open flames, cigarettes, cutting and welding tools, heat from friction, and other sources. Workers who work in confined spaces are at risk of death or injury from flammable items.
- Falls. Oilfield workers can fall from derricks, masts, drilling platforms, and other high surfaces.
- Vehicle collisions. Many workers need to travel long distances just to get to the wells. Oilfield trucks need to transport heavy machinery and equipment. According to OSHA, nearly 4 out of 10 oilfield workers are killed due to a vehicle accident.
- Electrical shock or electrocution. “Workers might be exposed to uncontrolled electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, or other sources of hazardous energy if equipment is not designed, installed, and maintained properly.”
At Slack Davis Sanger, we work with seasoned oilfield professionals who understand the federal and state regulations that apply to oilfield work. We also work with professionals who understand common oilfield safety standards. If your injury was the result of an act of negligence, we will represent you in a claim against the accountable party.
Acts of negligence that can lead to an oil field injury include:
- Poor training
- Improper repairs and maintenance
- Not storing toxic products correctly
- Not conducting routine inspections
- Failure to provide protective equipment
- Product defects
- Poor oversight
- Noncompliance with safety regulations
Examples of oil field and gas extraction injuries
Oilfield work is often deadly. Explosions, falls, vehicle accidents, and other accidents can take a life in an instant. The families of deceased victims can file wrongful death claims and the survivors can file personal injury claims – provided the accident is not covered by workers’ compensation.
Catastrophic oilfield accident injuries include:
- Burn injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord damage
- Traumatic amputation/limb loss
- Chronic back and neck pain
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Crush injuries
- Internal organ damage
- Loss of hearing
- Exposure to toxic fumes and hazardous chemicals
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Workers may suffer many other serious injuries such as nerve damage or tissue damage.
Who is liable for an oilfield accident?
A great amount of experience and skill is required to determine who is liable for an oilfield accident. While the way the accident happened may be clear, many different entities may be liable, including:
- The oilfield owners
- Repair crews
- Other responsible parties
At Slack Davis Sanger, we represent injured oilfield workers and site visitors in claims against some of the biggest oilfield employers in Texas such as Baker Hughes, Haliburton, Nabors Industries, Transocean, Chevron, Texas Pride Fuels Ltd., Precision Drilling, CNC Oilfield Services, and Basic Energy Services.
Who is liable when a defective product injures an oilfield worker?
Many oilfield accidents happen because the manufacturers, distributors, and sellers of energy machines, equipment, and tools emphasize profit ahead of the safety of the people who use their products. Oilfield workers use all types of products such as drills, oilfield trucks, forklifts, and cranes.
Manufacturers of the oilfield products are required to design products that are not defective and to use quality workmanship when making the products. The instructions on how to use these products need to be clear.
If a Dallas oilfield worker is injured, or a loved one dies due to a product defect, the manufacturer can be held strictly liable. Distributors and retailers may also be strictly liable for defective machinery, equipment, and tools.
Speak with a respected Dallas oilfield accident lawyer as soon as possible
At Slack Davis Sanger, our Dallas oilfield accident lawyers work with investigators and other professionals to determine how the accident happened, and who is responsible. We work with your medical team to fully determine just how devastating your injuries are. We file wrongful death claims for families when a beloved relative dies. We demand compensation for your pain and suffering, medical bills, lost income, and the other damages Texas law permits. To assert your rights to a recovery, please call 888-340-4028 or complete our contact form to make an appointment.
3500 Maple Avenue
Dallas, TX 75219
Main Dallas Practice Areas