Explosions at chemical plants and refineries can result in some of the most devastating injuries affecting workers in the Houston area. Unfortunately, these types of accidents are all too common. While these events may only be in the news for a day or two, the effects on the lives of workers and their families can last for years.
While the aftermath of such an accident can be shocking, it is vital that if you or a loved one has been injured or a loved one was killed in an explosion, you act right away to retain a Houston industrial explosion injury and death lawyer like the battle-tested attorneys at The Queenan Law Firm, P.C. Our attorneys know how to fight for your right to be compensated for the long-term effects of a horrific event such as a refinery explosion. We will work to ensure you receive the maximum possible amount of damages to which you are entitled and to bring your case to a resolution as swiftly as possible. Call us today at (817) 476-1797 to consult with one of our lawyers about your options.
Common Causes of Industrial Explosion Accidents in Houston, TX
Workplaces such as oil refineries and chemical plants are uniquely susceptible to the kinds of damage that can cause major injuries like loss of limbs, chemical burns, or even loss of lives. Rarely is it the case that these explosions are a result of a freak or chance occurrence. Almost every time, these accidents happen because of human error and neglect on the part of the employer tasked with properly maintaining the work environment. The following are just some of the types of accidents for which our attorneys are equipped to represent you.
- Failure to store dangerous chemicals properly
- Inadequate inspection of facilities
- Noncompliance with state and federal safety regulations
- Failure to provide proper safety equipment for employees
- Improper maintenance of factory equipment
Suing an Employer for Injuries or Death Resulting from Industrial Explosion Accidents in Houston
Many industrial workers assume that if something catastrophic happens at their workplace, their employer will step up to the plate and take care of them and their family. Unfortunately, after such an incident, most employers are more concerned with minimizing their losses and rebuilding quickly enough to keep making a profit than with helping their employees through a terrible time. As such, it is important that you have an experienced attorney like those at The Queenan Law Firm, P.C. representing your interests so you do not get left in the lurch.
A civil lawsuit against your employer is an option available if you or your employer has opted out of the Texas state worker’s compensation program. Any worker is eligible to opt out of this program if they notify their employer in writing within five days of starting the job. Recovery options from the worker’s compensation program are often limited, and it is often smart to maintain your right to file a civil suit so that you can maximize the potential damages you can receive for you and your family.
Proving a Lawsuit for a Refinery Explosion in Houston
Proving a civil suit against your employer after a catastrophic industrial explosion requires making a case that the employer was negligent in some way that led to the explosion. Usually, a federal or state agency will conduct an investigation into the causes of a major explosion and collect evidence that you can use in preparing your case. An attorney can also work to investigate and collect evidence.
Proving negligence in a civil suit requires producing enough evidence to show that there was a duty, a breach, and causation. A duty is a responsibility that your employer has to you and other workers. For example, federal and state regulations might make it a duty for an employer to conduct regular inspections to ensure factory equipment is working properly. A breach occurs when an employer fails to uphold one of their duties. If the employer failed to conduct inspections that were required by a federal or state agency, they would be in breach of their duty.
The final element you must prove in a negligence claim is causation. Often, this is the most difficult prong of the claim to prove, and this is where our skilled lawyers can effectively work to build your case. Causation means showing that the breach of duty caused the injuries or death in your case. To prove this, your lawyer would work to prove that your injury would not have occurred if the employer had conducted the mandated inspection as required or taken other necessary steps to fulfill their duties.
Damages from an Industrial Explosion Accident in the Houston Area
An experienced lawyer can fight to ensure that you receive all the damages to which you are entitled, and not just a bare minimum. While the amount of damages varies depending on each case, these damages can often be very substantial. Types of damages for injuries resulting from industrial accidents include the following:
- Pain and suffering
- Hospital bills
- Lost wages and earning potential
- Lost enjoyment of life
Wrongful Death Suits in the Houston Area
Losing a loved one to an accident caused by a preventable industrial explosion can be one of the most devastating experiences one can face. Not only have you lost a beloved member of your family, but you also now face the daunting process of supporting a family financially without the help of someone who was a major contributor to your family’s income. Types of expenses that can be recovered in wrongful death suits include the following:
- Lost companionship
- Lost wages and earning potential
- Funeral expenses
- Any hospital or medical expenses incurred before the death
Call One of Our Experienced Houston Industrial Explosion Injury and Death Lawyers Today
At The Queenan Law Firm, P.C., we understand the importance of not only fighting for a fair settlement but also ensuring that a settlement is reached quickly. Our Houston industrial explosion and death lawyers know how to fight for you to receive all of the damages to which you are entitled while also preventing the case from being dragged out for years while you and your family are stuck without the income you need to pay your bills. Do not hesitate to call us today at (817) 476-1797 for a free consultation.