If you or a loved one have been injured in an oil or gas accident in West Texas, it’s essential to understand your rights and seek the compensation you deserve. The aftermath of such an incident can be overwhelming, but you don’t have to handle it alone.

Our attorneys have a proven track record of success in handling oil and gas accident cases, and we will fight tirelessly to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. We will thoroughly investigate your case, gather evidence, and work with experts to build a strong case on your behalf. We will also handle all communication with insurance companies and other parties involved, so you can focus on your recovery.

If you or a loved one have been injured in an oil and gas accident, don’t wait to seek legal representation. Contact Abraham Watkins today by calling 713-535-9319 for a free consultation with an experienced oilfield injury lawyer. We will review your case and help you understand your rights and options. Don’t delay – call us now and let us help you get the compensation you deserve.

An oil field in the evening.

The Dangers of West Texas Oil and Gas Accidents

Every day, oilfield workers in the bustling West Texas oil and gas industry confront a multitude of hazards. From the perilous equipment they operate to the hazardous substances they handle, these brave individuals put their lives on the line to fuel our nation. Unfortunately, they often pay a steep price. The oil and gas companies, in their rush to maximize drilling before price drops, often overlook adequate training and safety measures, leading to a surge in accidents.

The problem is particularly pronounced in the Permian Basin, the highest-producing oilfield in the U.S., located in the Midland-Odessa region. Securing fair compensation can be daunting, underscoring the need for an experienced oilfield accident attorney.

High Accident Rates

The oil and gas industry, often celebrated for its economic contributions, hides a grim reality. From 2008 to 2017, the industry witnessed 1,566 worker fatalities, painting a disturbing picture of the risks involved. Looking more closely at the period from 2014 to 2019, Texas was responsible for an alarming 219 out of 470 industry-related deaths in the U.S.

A significant number of these fatalities were the result of vehicle crashes or incidents involving workers being hit by objects on site. Even the Permian Basin, despite accounting for about 40% of the nation’s oil production, had a lower proportion of industry-related deaths, suggesting regional variances in safety effectiveness. The true accident rates may be higher than official statistics suggest, as underreporting of vehicle-related deaths is a prevalent issue due to a lack of federal jurisdiction on public roads.

Common Hazards

A multitude of hazards are within the oilfields of West Texas, leading to the potential for an oil field accident. Some common causes of accidents include:

  • equipment failure;
  • electrocution;
  • explosions;
  • incidents with heavy machinery;
  • malfunctions and improperly balanced loads due to defective or unmaintained vehicle parts; and
  • failure to follow safety procedures.

These hazards can lead to dangerous accidents.

Prolonged exposure to hazardous chemicals like benzene poses serious health risks to workers, causing chronic respiratory or neurological damage. It’s the employers’ responsibility to perform risk assessments, schedule regular inspections and maintenance, and comply with safety regulations to prevent these accidents. Regulatory bodies like OSHA play a critical role in minimizing the risk of accidents in the workplace.

Rights and Compensation for Injured Oilfield Workers

In the aftermath of an oilfield accident, injured workers are often left grappling with physical pain, financial hardships, and emotional distress. Understanding their rights to compensation is vital for these workers. An oilfield worker cannot be fired for reporting a safety violation, ensuring the protection of workers’ rights. An employee can file a lawsuit in West Texas if the employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance or if a third party caused the injury.

Should an accident occur, oilfield workers must seek immediate medical attention. Attending all doctor’s appointments, taking prescribed medication, and following medical instructions for recovery are crucial steps in the process. Injured oilfield workers in West Texas may be entitled to workers’ compensation or personal injury claims as forms of compensation for oilfield accident victims. A personal injury lawsuit may allow workers to pursue both economic and non-economic damages such as emotional suffering, mental anguish, pain and suffering in the past and future, and permanent disfigurement following an accident.

There is a time limit of up to 2 years post-accident for filing a civil lawsuit or insurance claim, with shorter deadlines if workers’ compensation is involved. Injured workers are advised not to rely solely on the company and its insurer for compensation, as companies often prioritize minimizing payouts.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

Workers’ compensation insurance serves as a safety net for injured oilfield workers by providing workers compensation benefits, such as medical care and disability income payments. It’s not mandatory for private companies in Texas to carry such insurance. This insurance covers medical expenses, therapy, and a portion of lost income, ensuring financial support during recovery.

Workers’ compensation insurance shields employers from direct lawsuits. If an employer or coworker is at fault, injured workers have the ability to file a workers’ compensation claim.

Third-Party Personal Injury Claims

In Texas, injured workers can refuse workers’ compensation coverage to retain their right to sue for personal injury. This ensures the possibility of additional compensation through third-party claims, provided they notify their employer within five days of taking the job. Texas law allows injured workers to file a personal injury lawsuit if their employer does not carry workers’ compensation insurance, potentially providing broader compensation.

Contractors and subcontractors may be held accountable for injuries caused by their negligence on a drill site, paving the way for third-party personal injury claims. A personal injury lawsuit aims to cover all damages, including future medical expenses and lost wages, often offering more comprehensive coverage than workers’ compensation. Injured workers must be aware of the two-year statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits in West Texas and prepare for the legal challenges posed by large corporations.

Choosing the Right West Texas Oil and Gas Accident Attorney

Selecting the right attorney is a crucial step when seeking justice after an oilfield accident. An experienced attorney can be a game-changer, turning the tide in your favor. They offer a wealth of knowledge and a strong track record in handling oil rig injury cases and successfully advocating against large oil companies.

Here are some factors to consider when selecting an attorney:

  • experience in handling oil rig injury cases;
  • track record of success against large oil companies; and
  • reputation and client satisfaction, as indicated by online reviews and testimonials.

Taking the time to research and choose the right attorney can greatly increase your chances of a successful outcome in your oilfield accident case.

Narrow down your options to a few potential attorneys, interview each to evaluate their experience, and understand their fee structure. Look for attorneys who:

  • offer a free consultation on a contingency basis, allowing for an open discussion about the case without an immediate financial commitment;
  • have experience in oilfield accident cases;
  • have a track record of successful outcomes in similar cases;
  • are knowledgeable about the specific laws and regulations related to oilfield accidents; and
  • have good communication skills and are responsive to your needs and concerns.

Seeking recommendations from family, friends, coworkers, and even attorneys in other practice areas can also aid in identifying suitable oilfield accident attorneys.

How Our Attorneys at Abraham Watkins Can Help You

At Abraham Watkins, we pride ourselves on our commitment to our clients. With over seven decades of service to Texans and attorneys contributing more than 25 years of experience, we’ve secured significant financial awards for injury victims. Our legal team is dedicated to maximizing client compensation, employing deep knowledge of industry regulations and safety protocols to build comprehensive cases.

Our attorneys at Abraham Watkins have a distinguished history of securing substantial settlements and verdicts for our clients. With a wealth of experience and a client-first approach, we create customized strategies for each case, ensuring clear and consistent communication. We believe everyone deserves access to high-quality legal representation without an upfront cost, aligning our goals directly with your success.

Case Investigation

Adopting a multifaceted approach to case management, our attorneys diligently amass evidence and deal with various claim aspects to construct a robust case. We pull in experts such as:

  • industry professionals;
  • engineers;
  • accident reconstructionists; and
  • medical experts

to support the client’s claim with authoritative testimony and a precise assessment of the damages.

Negotiation and Litigation

We strive to secure the best possible settlements from insurance companies and at-fault parties through effective negotiation. Our skilled negotiators employ strategic moves such as demonstrating the seriousness of the claim to the at-fault parties and their insurers and counteracting tactics used to undervalue or dispute claims.

When negotiations fail to yield a fair settlement, we are fully prepared to litigate the case, demonstrating our versatility and commitment to achieving maximum compensation for our clients. Our services include:

  • thoroughly investigating the case;
  • gathering evidence and witness testimonies;
  • building a strong legal strategy;
  • representing our clients in litigation; and
  • advocating for their rights and interests.

Real-Life Success Stories

Our firm’s track record of success bears witness to our commitment to securing substantial compensation for our clients. The undefeated west Texas oilfield injury lawyers at our firm have won billions, showing our ability to take on challenging cases and deliver impressive results.

These large verdicts and settlements have allowed our clients to secure comprehensive compensation, including funding their children’s education and ensuring their settlements provide ongoing, tax-free income for life. Individual case successes reflect our commitment to our clients.

Contact Us

Whether it’s understanding workers’ compensation insurance or pursuing third-party personal injury claims, our attorneys at Abraham Watkins stand ready to guide and support you. We believe in the power of advocacy and the pursuit of justice. With our robust case management, effective negotiation, and litigation skills, we are committed to securing maximum compensation for our clients. After all, it’s not just about recovering from an accident; it’s about reclaiming your life and your future. Don’t wait any longer – call us today at 713-535-9319 to schedule a free consultation and take the first step towards reclaiming your life and your future.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you sue for pain and suffering in Texas?

Yes, in Texas, you can sue for pain and suffering if it is a result of someone else’s negligence. It’s important to gather evidence to support your case.

What is a personal injury claim in Texas?

In Texas, a personal injury claim allows you to seek compensation for damages resulting from an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, including medical expenses and lost income.

What rights do injured oilfield workers in West Texas have?

In West Texas, injured oilfield workers have the right to compensation through workers’ compensation or personal injury claims, and they are protected from being fired for reporting a safety violation.

What is workers’ compensation insurance?

Workers’ compensation insurance provides medical care or disability income payments to injured workers, but it’s not mandatory for private companies in Texas to carry this insurance.

Is it necessary to hire a West Texas oil and gas accident attorney for my case?

It is highly recommended to hire a West Texas oil and gas accident attorney if you are involved in an oilfield accident. An attorney with specific experience in this field can help you understand your rights, and ensure that you receive the maximum compensation possible. They can also manage all aspects of your case, from investigating the incident to negotiating with insurance companies or representing you in litigation if necessary.