In the last two years, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) has launched investigations into seven separate chemical accidents or explosions in the Houston area. Prior to 2018, the CSB only conducted roughly one investigation per year. Investigators believe that the massive increase in accidents which require an investigation by the CSB is due to a variety of factors such as the large number of chemical companies in the Houston area, the age of the infrastructure, and companies being allowed to self-regulate. Many of these explosions and fires have directly led to the deaths of workers, bystanders, millions of dollars in property damage, and the evacuation of tens of thousands of local residents who risk being exposed to toxic chemicals. The sheer number of chemical accidents even surprises veteran attorneys who have experience representing plaintiffs in these accidents. "We see two or three in a year, or one major event - but in the past two years or so, there have been so many fires and explosions", said Benny Agosto Jr., who recently spoke with Bloomberg Environment on the frequency of these accidents.
Posts tagged "workplace explosion"
One worker has died and three remain injured as a result of a recent tank battery explosion in Mead, Colorado. The explosion occurred after the workers completed upgrades to the tank battery. A tank battery is a group of connected tanks that receive produced crude oil from a well. The owner, Anadarko Petroleum Corp., stated that the Mead facility was not in service at the time of the blast.
An explosion injured several workers at the Sunoco Logistics plant in Nederland, Texas on Friday, August 12, 2016, at approximately 8:40 p.m. Several workers, contracted to work on a pipe containing crude oil, were working the night-shift, when suddenly and without warning, the pipe exploded. The blast and ensuing fire caused severe injuries to several workers who were directly within the proximity at the time of the explosion. Thankfully, monitors with the state and federal governments found no immediate threat to the general public afterward.
Texas crude oil production had hit 2.9 million barrels per day in July of 2013, roughly equal to Brazil's daily production this past year. The boom caused a large influx of workers, resulting in more work-related accidents. Between 2010 and 2014, nearly half of the nations' oil field deaths were in Texas. Most of the fatalities occurred at Eagle Ford Shale in La Salle County. There have been eight reported deaths, including three workers in a single explosion last year. There is speculation that Texas fatality numbers are higher than reported. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) currently has investigations open regarding hazardous incidents, but their findings are not available to the public yet. OHSA often levies citations and fines to companies that fail to follow regulations that could create a hazardous work environment.
Monday, March 23, 2015 will mark 10 years since the horrific BP explosion in Texas City, which took the lives of 15 people and injured approximately 180 others. The BP explosion is to date one of the worst refinery explosions. The lives of those involved and their families may never be the same after this disaster.