Oil fields may offer excellent opportunities for many workers. However, like any industry with a great deal of outdoor work and a lot of machinery, oil field work can present numerous hazards.
Knowing about the most common types of accidents and what to do should you suffer one can help you protect your health and finances down the line.
Common types of injuries
Oil field workers encounter many sources of injuries. These often include toxic materials exposure, malfunctioning equipment and falls from heights.
Some accidents happen because a company’s procedures do not prioritize safety. Some companies skimp on safety equipment and proper training, rushing new workers into operating equipment they may not fully understand. Other times, the company may officially have the right rules in place but in practice creates a pressured environment where workers feel discouraged from following safety protocols in favor of working faster.
Negligence by an individual
In some cases, an accident can trace back to a particular negligent action by another worker or a supervisor. Workers have suffered injury because someone else did not operate equipment correctly, failed to look and signal before moving a piece of machinery, or set up an unstable structure. Working under the influence of drugs, alcohol, fatigue or distraction can increase the chances of a serious accident occurring.
Faulty equipment and tools can cause injuries when they malfunction. Sometimes the glitch happens due to faulty manufacturing, improper assembly or operation.
When you suffer a work injury, it can be hard to identify the causes right away. You probably want to focus on getting the medical treatments you need. Injuries can cause you to miss time from work, cut your hours or even quit your job if you are not able to work.
Workers compensation likely unavailable
If you moved from another state to work in a Texas oil field, you might assume you can get workers’ compensation benefits. Unlike other states, Texas does not require private employers to maintain workers’ compensation coverage. You may need to file a lawsuit to recover damages and your financial losses. Speaking with an experienced local attorney can help you clarify your options.