Following the fatal Oklahoma oil field accident in January, safety in the oil and gas industry has been the subject of many discussions and reports. Some suggest that awareness of typical hazards of the industry might save lives. Workers on oil fields might take precautions if they are fully informed of potential risks they will face. Surprisingly, vehicle accidents — something to which most people would hardly give a second thought — causes most workplace injuries on oil fields.
Burns are also frequently suffered by oil industry workers, typically caused by flammable liquids and vapor, hot work operations and hazardous chemicals. Communication and training programs for handling chemicals are crucial, and being equipped with the necessary personal protective equipment is vital. Caught-between, struck-by and slip-and-fall hazards make up a group of accidents that can cause severe injuries, although they are mostly preventable.
Hydrogen Sulfide Gas is a hazard that requires constant alertness because it is colorless, and although it has a horrible rotten-egg smell, it causes workers to quickly lose their sense of smell. This gives the impression that there is no presence of the deadly gas because they no longer smell it. Workers could take note that hydrogen sulfide accumulates in low-lying spaces or areas because it weighs more than air. This makes confined low-lying spaces like utility holes extremely dangerous. Nobody should enter such areas without appropriate respiratory equipment.
Victims of workplace injuries on oilfields in Oklahoma might be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits to cover medical expenses and lost wages for those who suffered temporary disability. Additional benefits might be awarded to workers whose injuries caused permanent disabilities. Navigating the claims process might seem a daunting task, but the assistance of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can simplify the procedure.