Among the numerous risks faced by workers at offshore oil rigs, the threat of explosions carries potentially fatal consequences. The industry faced yet another grim reminder of this possibility when an explosion occurred on November 20, on a rig in the Gulf of Mexico. Fieldwood Energy, based in Houston, owned the platform where a heater treater blew up. As a result of the offshore oil rig explosion, three workers were injured and one was killed, although the company has stated that the isolated incident caused no damage to the rig or its surrounding environment. According to the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, the platform was not in production during the incident and investigations are underway to determine its cause.
This incident follows on the heels of another fatal incident, which claimed the life of a contractor in September who was working on a pipeline off the coast of Louisiana. Although oil rigs explosions are relatively rare occurrences, they often leave devastating results in their wake. Fatalities such as these demonstrate how easily a worker can lose his or her life while working on an offshore rig.
To minimize the number of incidents and the damages resulting from inevitable accidents that do occur, a number of stringent guidelines are enforced via federal regulations and company policies. The industry as a whole, individual companies, and workers must remain vigilant about safety measures in order to prevent disasters. Education and training play a large part in preparing workers for emergency situations, as well as emphasizing safe practices to prevent accidents.
Important Training Topics on Offshore Rigs:
- The regular inspection of gear and equipment
- The maintenance and replacement broken or worn down items
- Evacuation procedures
- Emergency protocol, including communication lines
- Fire response and containment procedures
Constant vigilance is important in preventing offshore explosion disasters such as this one. When workers, supervisors, and companies ignore even the smallest of details or required procedures, fatalities can occur. If you believe that your safety has been jeopardized by unsafe practices aboard an offshore oil rig, our oil rig accident attorneys can help you review your situation and determine if legal recourse is available.
Contact us today for a free consultation.