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Albuquerque Oil Field Accident Lawyer

Albuquerque Oil Field Accident Lawyer

Getting injured at work can be devastating and stressful. You’re worried about when you can get back to work or how you’ll pay for your medical bills while you’re out of work. When you suffer an injury at work, you’re owed compensation through the company’s insurance, but unfortunately, insurance companies don’t always want to pay out for on-the-job injuries.

Oil field injuries are often very damaging and deadly, and we want you to know that Barrera Law Group, LLC has a team waiting to help. If you or someone you know was injured or killed in an oil field accident, reach out to an expert Albuquerque oil field accident lawyer today. We have experience with these types of accidents, and we take every case seriously and personally.

Common Dangers of the Oil Industry

Although the pay is high, oil rigs are dangerous places, often resulting in serious injuries and death among oil and gas extraction (OGE) workers. They work with heavy machinery and equipment and handle or transport hazardous and flammable materials every day. Accidents in or near oil fields can also lead to explosions.

According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were 114 fatalities among OGE workers in 2019. Production made up the largest percentage of worker fatalities at 17.7%, and well servicing company workers were 60.4% of all worker fatalities. The Permian Basin in Southeast New Mexico is the most dangerous oil-rich area, responsible for approximately one-third of all oil worker deaths.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has identified both health and safety hazards that OGE workers are exposed to in their daily work.

Health Hazards

Unfortunately, hazardous working conditions go hand in hand with oil-related work, including but not limited to the following:

  • Naturally occurring radioactive materials
  • Hazardous chemicals
  • Hydrocarbon gases and vapors and low oxygen environments
  • Diesel particulates
  • Hydrogen sulfide
  • Silica
  • Noise
  • Extreme temperatures
  • Long working hours

Safety Hazards

With any strenuous job involving heavy machinery, safety is always a big concern. Some of the top safety hazards for oil workers are:

  • Falls
  • Confined spaces
  • Heavy machinery
  • Vehicle collisions
  • High-pressure lines and equipment
  • Explosions and fires
  • Electrical hazards
  • Being struck by or caught in or between equipment or other hazards

If you or someone you know has been injured, suffers from health issues or was killed due to employment in the oil industry, Barrera Law Group LLC has qualified attorneys ready to assist with your case.

Causes and Types of Oil Field Accidents

As with a lot of other types of accidents, those on an oil field are largely preventable. Inadequately trained workers or those who take safety shortcuts, ignore safety protocols, or are just in a hurry are more likely to cause unnecessary accidents. Here are some common causes that can lead to oil field accidents:

  • Exposure to hazardous gases and explosions, coupled with the failure to recognize these hazards
  • Overworked employees who take shortcuts to get the job done faster
  • Defective equipment or poorly maintained machinery
  • Drilling schedules that put pressure on workers to complete a job timely
  • Failure to follow the chain of command
  • Language barriers leading to a lack of knowledge of the surroundings
  • Workers who are spread too thin or don’t show up to the job site on time

While these factors can cause accidents to occur, the most common fatality accidents on an oil field involve vehicles, 26.8% according to the CDC. Contact injuries are the next most common fatal event at 21.7%, and 10% of all worker fatalities involve exposure (harmful substances, environmental exposures, alcohol or drug overdose, etc.).

What You Should Do After an Oil Field Accident

It’s understandable for anyone to be disoriented after any type of accident, but it’s imperative to gather as much information as possible so that you can receive the appropriate compensation for your injuries. After an oil field accident, you should follow these steps as best you can:

  • Seek medical care: Go to the doctor immediately after your injury occurs, even if you believe your injury may be minor.
  • Inform your employer: As soon as possible, tell your employer of your injury with details of the incident in writing.
  • Keep records: Collect all medical records, receipts, documents, emails, etc. related to the incident and your treatment.
  • Contact an attorney: Call our team at Barrera Law Group LLC for a free consultation and case evaluation.

Your attorney will gather all the information you already have and any additional information they deem necessary to present to your employer’s legal team. Our lawyers at Barrera understand the complexities of these types of cases and will work with you to get you the most compensation for your claim so that you can focus on recovery.

Expected Compensation for Oil Field Injuries

While each case is unique and compensation varies depending on case specifics, you or your dependents can receive compensation for both economic and noneconomic damages that apply to your case, such as:

  • All medical bills related to your injury
  • Lost wages, both now and in the future
  • Mental anguish
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium
  • Post-traumatic stress (PTSD)
  • Disfigurement
  • Impairment
  • Death

Additionally, an experienced lawyer from our team can assist you in filing for workers’ compensation, not just for work-related injuries but also for any illness you contracted due to exposure while working in an oil field. Any illness or injury that occurs at work or because of the work you do qualifies you for worker’s compensation.

If you believe your injury or illness is connected to your work, you need to give your supervisor written notice within 15 days of the accident. Your lawyer will ensure all the necessary documentation is given to your employer and your employer’s insurance company to expedite your workers’ compensation claim.

Why You Should Hire a Lawyer for Your Oil Field Accident

Oil fields are a vital part of the economy in the Land of Enchantment, and without proper safety protocols, the already unsafe industry becomes even more dangerous. People from Albuquerque make their living in oil fields every day, and with the increased demand for oil field work, injuries related to the work are on the rise.

Any injury or illness connected to oil field work can turn into a tricky case, especially if your employer, their insurance company, or whoever else may be liable doesn’t want to hold to their duty of care. This is why hiring an attorney experienced in oil field accidents and injuries is important. Your lawyer knows the legal process, statutes of limitations (time limits) for filing your claim, and how to best help you receive the most compensation for your injuries.

Fighting for New Mexico Oil Workers

Any kind of workplace accident can be complicated, not only because of injuries sustained but also in trying to prove fault. You may think that you’ll immediately be approved for workers’ compensation; however, sometimes claims are denied, or you’re not given fair compensation for what you’ve suffered. There may also be a case for negligence if your lawyer can provide proof that someone else’s actions caused your workplace accident.

No matter how intricate you think your case may be, our lawyers at Barrera Law Group LLC have decades of experience with claims just like yours in Albuquerque or anywhere in New Mexico. Determining fault can be a complex process, but finding the right legal representation isn’t. Reach out to our office today for your free, no-obligation consultation.

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