Work Accidents Pipeline Explosions
Work-related injuries happen in all industries; but Texas has become a complicated web of oil and gas pipelines where sudden, violent, catastrophic pipeline accidents occur, seriously injuring workers and ending lives in a matter of moments.
The state of Texas has over 43,000 miles of natural gas pipelines, more than any other state in the United States. However, these figures do not include oil and other similar industrial pipelines. The network has experienced a significant demand for growth over the last several years, driven by the quick expansion and development of oil and natural gas production. Many updates to old pipelines are being conducted as well. No matter the scenario, pipeline explosions can cause serious injuries to workers, as well as to the surrounding population.
Causes of Pipeline Explosions
Pipeline explosions can occur in a variety of ways. Pipelines may be ruptured in many instances by a third party striking or impacting the pipeline, which is often attributed to neglectful activity above ground. For example, an outside contractor may dig near a pipeline while unaware of its presence because a sign was not properly posted or the contractor failed to confirm the area was safe for work. This may cause them to rupture the pipeline. Other times, pipeline explosions can occur when an automobile or heavy machinery makes contact with a pipeline. In either case, when there is a pipeline explosion causing serious injuries or death, the responsible parties can and should be held responsible for the resulting injuries and damages.
Oil and Gas Industry Accidents
Another common cause of gas line and pipeline explosions is poor maintenance. With many gas and other pipelines in advanced stages of aging, it has become a huge problem in the United States – especially in the last several years. Many of these systems are over 50 years old, still contain a variety of explosive materials, and have not been repaired or properly maintained, yet still remain in operation.
Structural damage and deterioration in pipelines may not be visually obvious because the corrosion is internal or is limited to underground segments of the pipeline. As gas line and pipeline walls break down, cracks can form, making them extremely dangerous, especially when pipelines carry highly explosive petrochemical products. These petrochemical products are pressurized in order to move them through the system, which make them even more volatile.
Pipeline explosions in Texas are covered under a complex umbrella of laws, and injured workers can find themselves overwhelmed by it all. Be sure to have the proper representation before moving forward. The oil and gas injury lawyers at Craft Law Firm can help you decide on the best course of action, so contact us today.