Blog

Texas Man Covered by Asphalt in Explosion

Photo of Brant Stogner

A normal day at work ended tragically when an asphalt tanker exploded at a refinery, covering Darrell Allen, a Texas truck driver, with molten asphalt. One year later, the truck driver is suing the Shreveport-based oil company, Calumet Specialty Products Partners, and its affiliate companies for damages after enduring third-degree burns covering over 90 percent of his body. Mr. Allen spent over three months in intensive care, suffering through debridement treatments that can only be described as being "skinned-alive" daily.

On April 23, 2015, Allen went to a refinery to pick up a load of asphalt. Upon arriving at the refinery, Allen's vehicle was already overfilled by 3,000 pounds of liquid asphalt. For reference, liquid asphalt is typically heated to 350 degrees in order to keep it from hardening. Only one refinery employee was on duty at the time to offload the extra asphalt. As a result, the employee asked Allen to assist in the offloading process despite Allen's lack of training. Unbeknownst to either Allen or the employee, the hose used to offload the asphalt was not properly cleaned out. When the water from the hose hit the liquid asphalt, the asphalt expanded which caused the explosion. As Allen lay covered in molten hot asphalt, he pushed himself up causing severe burns to his hands and used the emergency shower where he passed out.

All indicators assert this tragedy was preventable. In a similar occurrence in 1999, the refinery's safety director testified truck drivers are prohibited from assisting in the offloading process of liquid asphalt.

In 2007, OSHA cited the refinery for "willful, serious, and repeat" violations in the amount of $122,400, and in 2010, OSHA issued penalties amounting to $173,000 for 22 alleged serious violations.

Allen's attorneys state, Mr. Allen will require millions of dollars' worth of medical expenses throughout the rest of his life. It is clear Mr. Allen's life has forever been changed by this incident, an incident in which he carries no fault but suffers 100 percent of the consequences.

If you or someone you know was injured or killed in an accident involving a refinery or in a trucking incident, it is important to know your rights to recover. Contact an attorney at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Sorrels, Agosto & Friend by calling 713-222-7211 or toll free at 1-800-870-9584 for a confidential consultation.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Awards & Recognition

  • 2016-2017 Equal Access to Justice Champion

    The Equal Access to Justice Champions Program was started by the Houston Bar Association in 2006, to help ensure placement of Houston Volunteer Lawyers cases with pro bono volunteers. Originally, firms were tiered according to size, and firms within each tier committed to accept a certain number of pro bono cases from HVL each year for five years.

  • The National Trial Lawyers | Top 100 Trial Lawyers

    The National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 is an invitation-only organization composed of the premier trial lawyers from each state or region who meet stringent qualifications as civil plaintiff and/or criminal defense trial lawyers. Selection is based on a thorough multi-phase objective and uniformly applied process which includes peer nominations combined with third-party research.

  • Million Dollar Advocates Forum

    Established in 1993, the Million Dollar Advocates Forum (which includes the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum) is one of the most prestigious groups of trial lawyers in the United States. Membership is limited to attorneys who have won million and multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements. There are over 4000 members throughout the country. Fewer than 1% of U.S. lawyers are members.

  • Recognized by Best Lawyers America | Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Sorrels, Agosto & Aziz | 2017

    Recognition by Best Lawyers is based entirely on peer review. Their methodology is designed to capture, as accurately as possible, the consensus opinion of leading lawyers about the professional abilities of their colleagues within the same geographical area and legal practice area.

  • Lead Counsel Rated

    In order to earn the Lead Counsel Rating, an attorney must not only demonstrate significant legal experience, but must also receive multiple peer recommendations advocating his or her ability. This is a key component in the screening process.

  • Texas Super Lawyers | Texas Monthly

    Each year, Super Lawyers recognizes the top lawyers in Texas via a patented multiphase selection process involving peer nomination, independent research and peer evaluation. The Texas lawyers who receive the highest point totals during this selection process are further recognized in Texas Super Lawyers Top Lists.

Get Your Free Case Review 713.587.9668

Let Us Help You Today! Request a Free Consultation

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

  • $50+ Million Personal Injury Fire and Explosion

    The firm successfully represented nearly 100 victims who suffered personal injuries and damages to property from a large fire and explosion resulting in a settlement of more than $50 million. The firm served as lead lawyers on the steering committee in this litigation.

  • $80 Million Personal Injury Large Plant Explosion

    The firm successfully represented 270 plaintiffs', taking a lead role in the plaintiffs' steering committee, who suffered injuries in a large plant explosion resulting in a settlement of nearly $80 million.

  • $50+ Million Personal Injury Plant Fire and Explosion

    The firm successfully represented 45 personal injury victims in a plant fire and explosion, serving on the plaintiffs' steering committee, concluding with a settlement of more than $50 million.

  • $22+ Million Personal Injury Work Site Accident

    The firm prevailed in a personal injury trial for a worksite injury client with the jury returning a verdict and resulting in a judgment of over $22 million for the firm's client.

  • $12 Million Auto Accident 18-Wheeler Collision

    The firm successfully achieved a $12 million settlement for the family of a man who died in an 18 wheeler collision.

  • $30 Million Personal Injury Burn Victims

    The firm prevailed on behalf of three burn victims with settlements totaling nearly $30 million.

Our Record Of Success.

When you are hurt and you choose a law firm to represent you in court or at the negotiation table, you need to carefully consider the firm's record.

More Success Stories