Working on an oil rig is one of the most dangerous jobs in the country. A significant number of oil and gas workers are injured each year aboard oil rigs. These injuries can have devastating effects and can take workers away from their jobs for several weeks and sometimes months. Some injuries can be life-altering and prevent experienced workers from working on an oil rig ever again.
Some of the common types of oil rig injuries include:
- Back and neck injuries- Work aboard an oil rig can include lifting heavy equipment or machines. This can cause an enormous strain on the back and neck. Sometimes workers are directed to transport equipment or machinery without the proper safety measures that can lead to painful back and neck strains or herniated discs. These injuries can sometimes require surgical intervention.
- Burns- Since oil rigs are dealing with flammable oil and gas, explosions and fires are common. These can occur because breakers are not maintained or equipment has not been inspected properly. Burn injuries are not only painful but often permanent. Even with the use of skin grafts, burn injuries can cause permanent scarring.
- Chemical/toxic exposure- Sometimes the equipment or machines used on the oil rigs can contain acids and toxic chemicals that when exposed to human skin can burn or dissolve the skin.
- Head injuries- Workers aboard an oil rig are often handling tools, equipment and machines. Without proper safety measures, workers can sustain significant injuries from falling tools or debris from an explosion.
- Amputations/lacerations- When handling heaving equipment, welders or members of the deck crew can often experience impacts from falling objects. These objects can lead to amputation of fingers or hands.
- Hand injuries- A recent study found that between 46.3 and 48% of injuries aboard an oil rig involve hand injuries. Handling heavy equipment or jamming fingers can cause painful injuries.
Causes of Oil Rig Injuries
There are a variety of reasons why oil rig injuries occur, however. A recent study entitled “Work Related Diseases and Injuries on an Oil Rig” in the International Maritime Health Journal conducted an analysis of diseases and injuries of the workers on an American oil rig operating in the Mediterranean sea. Over the course of one year, they found that the main causes of injuries on the oil rig were:
- Inattention of workers or personnel
- Sleepiness from the crew and workers
- Inexperience from new members of the rig
- Failure to follow proper safety measures and standards
- Lack of supervision
- Defective equipment or tools
Oil Rig Injury Lawyers
Our experience inside the Courtroom has garnered several awards, including induction into the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, Million Dollar Advocates Forum and SuperLawyers by Texas Monthly Magazine. Please contact us for more information on oil rig injuries.
If you or a family member was injured on an oil rig, please contact our law firm. We have extensive experience with maritime injuries. We will provide a free case evaluation. We handle all cases on a contingency basis, meaning that we don’t get paid unless we win or settle.