Despite the economic slowdown of recent years and the struggling employment market, one industry – the oil industry – continues to thrive and has actually seen a more than 23 percent increase in job opportunities over the past few years.
While this is good news for people who may be looking for work, the tragic flip side of this coin is that, according to researchers, the expansion of drilling in the U.S. has significantly increased the number of oil field accident deaths dramatically.
As Ryan Hill, the head of the oil and gas extraction program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, has explained:
During times of high demand [in the oil and drilling industry] like now, there are new workers brought into this industry, and these are workers that may not have relevant training and experience… they didn’t grow up around the industry, especially in some of the newer oil fields.”
The Statistics Underscore the Recent Spike in Oil Field Accident Deaths
The following statistics, which have been compiled and published by the CDC, as well as the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), highlight the substantial increase in oil field accident deaths in the U.S. in recent years:
- In 2012, 138 workers suffered oil field accident deaths. This represented a more than 100 percent increase in these fatalities since 2009 and the highest reported number of oil field accident deaths since the BLS began recording these statistics in 2003.
- Oil field and gas workers are currently about 8 times more likely to sustain a fatal on-the-job injury than they were even just a few years ago.
- Approximately 40 percent of all oil field deaths occur in Texas oil field and drilling operations.
- When oil field accidents are not deadly, they can still involve workers sustaining catastrophic injuries like, for instance, the loss of limbs, severe bone fractures and even severe burns. In fact, in 2012:
- 79 oil field workers reportedly lost their limbs in work-related accidents;
- 82 others were involved in crushing accidents;
- 675 sustained severe bone fractures; and
- More than 90 sustained severe burns.
OSHA officials have noted that they have to step up their monitoring of oil companies to better protect these workers and reduce the number oil field accident deaths regardless of the economic benefits this industry may bring.
Mount Vernon Oil Field Accident Lawyers at the Law Firm of Hassakis & Hassakis, P.C.
Have you or a loved one been hurt in an oil field accident? Or have you lost a loved one in a fatal oil field accident? If so, the Mount Vernon oil field accident lawyers at the Law Firm of Hassakis & Hassakis, P.C. are here for you.
Since 1950, we have been dedicated to providing our clients throughout Southern Illinois with the highest quality of legal services. Our trusted attorneys focus on our clients’ needs, we are passionate about our clients, and we do everything we can to help them get the maximum possible compensation for their losses and injuries so they can focus on recovery and moving on with their life.
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