At Grimes & Fertitta in Houston and The Woodlands, our oil rig injury lawyers have decades of combined experience advocating for victims who have suffered serious or even fatal injuries. We are recognized for our sophisticated representation and our proven record of maximizing financial compensation for our injured clients and their loved ones.
Houston is home to many chemical plants and oil refineries, some of which have been in operation for nearly 100 years. Unfortunately, all that history doesn’t always add up to wisdom and safe practices by the oil companies. Negligence, outdated equipment, and improper training are all too common on drilling rigs, and the results can be devastating.
If you or a loved one have been injured or killed in an oil rig explosion or accident, don’t rely on the oil companies to do the right thing—contact the Houston oil rig injury lawyers at Grimes & Fertitta today.
Why drilling rigs are so dangerous
Offshore workers face a variety of dangers every day on the job, and it’s up to the oil companies to ensure safety for all workers. Unfortunately, even with OSHA regulations in place, serious oil rig injuries and accidents still happen.
Between all the heavy equipment, long work hours, and highly flammable substances, offshore workers are exposed to extremely dangerous conditions on a regular basis. And while incidents aren’t necessarily the norm, the results can be devastating when they occur.
These are just some of the damages offshore workers face on the job:
- Explosions and fires: When equipment and worksites aren’t properly maintained, sparks from tools and machinery can make contact with flammable liquids, causing explosions and fires. Additional hazards such as well blowouts also increase explosion risks.
- Poorly managed equipment: Sharp handheld tools, heavy machinery, and construction pieces including pipes and cables are everywhere on an oil rig, and when these pieces of equipment aren’t properly stored, used, or maneuvered, workers can be struck and severely injured or killed.
- Unsafe workspaces: Long hours and fast-paced working conditions are already a dangerous combination, and when surfaces are left uncleaned or littered with equipment, the risk of deadly falls increases significantly.
Protecting your rights after an oil rig injury
If you have been injured, or a loved one has been killed, in a chemical plant or oil rig explosion, it is crucial that you speak with an experienced attorney right away.
As your employer, oil companies have an obligation to provide you with a safe work environment and are required to abide by regulations such as those set forth by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). And when oil companies violate these regulations, placing offshore workers at risk, they can be held accountable for any ensuing damages or injuries.
Nevertheless, even if they are 100% at-fault, oil companies often try to undermine claims. With lawyers at their beck and call, these companies excel at acting quickly to cut down on the compensation you receive.
An experienced Houston oil rig injury lawyer can help you gather, preserve, and present the evidence necessary to win the compensation you and your family need and deserve.
Winning compensation for your oil rig injury
The benefits you can receive for your offshore accident or oil rig injury are heavily dependent upon multiple factors, including the location where the accident took place, whether or not your employer provides workers’ compensation benefits, and who is at fault for the actual injury.
If you’ve been injured in an offshore accident, there are several ways you may be able to obtain additional benefits, even if your employer already provides workers’ compensation.
- The Jones Act: Seamen working on a navigable offshore drilling rig may be able to obtain compensation through the Jones Act. In order for your case to qualify for benefits under the Jones Act, you and your oil rig injury lawyer must also establish fault on the part of your employer.
- Workers’ compensation: In Texas, workers’ compensation is a “no-fault” policy, meaning that you are eligible for benefits and compensation, even if you are deemed at fault for your own injuries. However, if your employer is at fault or if the accident resulted in death, you may be entitled to additional benefits, including medical benefits, income benefits, death benefits, and burial benefits.
- Filing a lawsuit: If your employer does not offer workers’ compensation and you can prove that their negligence contributed to your offshore accident, you may be able to sue for the compensation you need for your recovery.
Regardless of employer coverage, do not agree to any kind of settlement offer from your employer or insurance company before speaking with a qualified chemical plant and oil rig injury attorney who can advise you of your rights.
Hire an oil rig injury lawyer in Houston that protects you, your family, and your rights
Unlike the oil companies, the oil rig injury lawyers at Grimes & Fertitta see the real lives behind the injuries and claims. To us, you’re more than just a case number — that’s why we emphasize, thorough, highly personal service at each stage of your case.
Chances are, the owners of the plant or oil rig already have attorneys gathering evidence on their behalf in an effort to minimize their potential liability. The time to act is now.