Southern Louisiana is home to over 100 chemical plants and a dozen oil refineries. While the petrochemical industry is a major employer in our area, it is also a hazardous workplace and accidents are common. When you or a loved one is injured in an industrial accident, your medical expenses should be covered by Louisiana’s workers’ compensation program. However, these benefits will only cover approved medical expenses and will not compensate you for other losses. It’s possible that you may also have a personal injury claim against the negligent party who caused your accident. To find out, call Attorney Rusty Bianca. He will not only handle your workers’ comp claim but will investigate other possible claims to maximize your compensation. The Bianca Law Firm offers ASL services for Deaf clients.
Types of Refinery Accidents
Anyone who has worked in a chemical plant or oil refinery, or on a production platform or drilling rig, knows about the risks of the job. Working with such volatile substances makes the possibility of a deadly accident very real. Workers in the chemical and oil industries are in danger of the following types of accidents:
- Explosions. Pressurized chemicals, flammable gases, and volatile materials stored and processed near heat sources and open flames are a recipe for disaster—one that has occurred too many times in our area. Explosions at chemical plants and oil refineries have killed and injured dozens of workers in the last decade. Victims of workplace explosions may have cause to sue multiple parties for negligence.
- Chemical spills. Even with mandatory safety regulations in place, accidents can happen when working with chemicals. Exposure to toxic materials can cause burns, blindness, respiratory damage, and industrial illness. If a spill was caused by defective storage or processing equipment, a third-party supplier could be liable.
- Burns. Workers in the chemical and oil industries work around open flames, electrical sources, steam, and toxins that can cause catastrophic burns when an accident occurs. Co-worker negligence, defective equipment, or an unsafe workplace could be the cause of a worker’s burn injuries.
- Transportation accidents. Tanker trucks driving to and from chemical plants, oil refineries, and oil fields can be involved in crashes that injure other drivers and nearby workers. Boating accidents in the Gulf are also a cause of worker injury and death. The owners and operators of these vehicles could be held liable for your injuries.
- Falls. As the leading cause of workplace injuries, falls are common in the petrochemical industry as well. Falling from a platform or slipping and tripping on an unsafe surface could result in serious injury. When fall prevention measures are absent or defective, the party responsible may be held liable.
- Other accidents. Being caught in or between equipment, injury caused by overexertion, assault by a coworker, and other workplace incidents can lead to a serious injury that deserves compensation.
While your employer may be cooperative in helping you file a workers’ comp claim when you are injured on the job, it is unlikely that he will inform you of other possible options for reimbursement. That’s why you need a Baton Rouge attorney.
Who May Be Liable
Under state workers’ compensation law, you cannot sue an employer for damages following a workplace injury. Carrying workers’ comp insurance releases the employer from liability for accidents. However, worksites in Southern Louisiana often have multiple entities working on them and one of them may be liable for causing the accident that left you injured. Examples of third-party liability include:
- Trucking companies
Our experienced investigators will determine who may be liable and build a case for compensation on your behalf.
What the Bianca Law Firm Can Do for You
Your employer may be discouraging you from reporting your injury or applying for workers’ compensation or a third party may be liable for your injuries. Attorney Rusty Bianca is an experienced work injury lawyer and can help you manage your workers’ comp claim and investigate further sources of compensation. Schedule a free consultation in our Baton Rouge law office today. We specialize in Deaf rights and welcome Deaf clients who suffered work injuries.