On January 15, 2015 a mass tragedy struck a Dimmitt County, Texas oil field when five workers were killed and three more were injured in an oil tanker explosion on U.S. Highway 83. Around 7 a.m., the oil tanker swerved to avoid a pickup truck, but the two ended up colliding anyway, igniting an explosion within seconds.
The increased amount of traffic that an oil boom brings can increase the number of incidents where oil tankers collide with other vehicles. The Houston Chronicle reported 12 vehicle-related fatalities in Karnes County, a short jaunt east of Dimmitt, in a six-month period in 2012. In 2008, prior to the oil boom, the same county reported a single death. The Chronicle also reported that crashes involving three or more fatalities are on the rise in the region, possibly due to the long hours that oilfield workers work. Getting behind the wheel after a 20-hour shift is a recipe for disaster.
The risks do not end at the Texas border. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the three states with the most oil and gas industry fatal work injuries annually are Texas (averaging 41 fatal work injuries), Oklahoma (averaging 21 fatal work injuries), and our home state of Louisiana (averaging 13 fatal work injuries). For up to date information on oil field accidents, follow us on Twitter.
Galloway Jefcoat – Oil Field Injury Lawyers