There are certain industries which require the use of flammable materials, chemicals, controlled explosions, and other occupational hazards which could lead to accidental explosions and injuries.
The mining industry uses controlled explosions to create shafts and tunnels. If a mistake is made, workers could get seriously injured or killed. Other explosive hazards include natural gases like methane and coal dust explosions.
Oil refinery explosions frequently make national news headlines. In 2010, Tesoro Refinery outside of Seattle experienced an accidental explosion which resulted in the deaths of seven employees. An investigation by the State Department found violations of safety regulations, the use of failing equipment, postponed maintenance, and inadequate testing for potential hazards.
There's no excuse for an employer's blatant disregard of safety rules. In cases of extreme negligence like this, a personal injury claim against the refinery may be viable. In this particular incident, the families of six of the killed workers received a settlement for $39 million.
Construction sites are full of potentially explosive materials. Negligent mistakes made by on-site workers could cause a serious blast which could result in multiple injuries. Civilian passersby are also at a high risk, since many construction sites are open-air and in proximity to public streets. Specific hazards which could result in a fire or explosion include:
- Welding accidents
- Operators of heavy machinery striking pipelines
- Propane tanks
- High voltage electricity
- Natural gas leaks
- Combustible dust
If an explosion was caused by a negligent party, victims may recover compensation in a personal injury claim. Possible negligent parties include employers who violated safety standards, property owners who failed to maintain their properties, other contractors who made mistakes, and manufacturers of defective equipment.
How Can Families Be Compensated?
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured or killed in a workplace explosion, you are entitled to compensation for your suffering. Worker's Compensation can help pay for medical expenses, a portion of lost wages, and death benefits to surviving family members. But grieving families may be hesitant to begin the complex claims or appeals process. Our lawyers can handle that part for you, and we'll only ask for payment after you've received your compensation.
In cases of permanent disability, injured workers may apply for Social Security Disability in addition to benefits from Workers' Compensation.
Many of these incidents could have been prevented if management had taken safety precautions more seriously. In cases of gross negligence, you may have the option to file a personal injury claim against your employer or a negligent third party who contributed to the accident.
Consider meeting with an experienced and aggressive work injury lawyer to discuss your family's options. This is the only real way to uncover all possible paths towards compensation in order to secure the full award your family deserves.