West Texas Oil Field Explosion Kills Two
Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) August 4, 2014 - Two oil workers were killed in an explosion at an oil well in West Texas.
Amos B. Ortega, 46, and Robert Magdaleno, 41, were killed at a Loving County oilfield on April 30, 2014. Nine other workers were injured. The two deceased were employees of independent contractors of Ameriflow Energy Services for well owner RKI Exploration & Production, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“Unfortunately, death and serious injury are not unusual among oil field workers,” said Houston attorney Richard LaGarde, who is not involved in the case. “But we must not simply accept this. Most oilfield explosions are preventable by industry-standard maintenance and safety precautions. It will be up to investigators to determine whether those procedures were properly observed at this well.”
In the weeks following the explosion, its cause remained a mystery to investigators from the Railroad Commission of Texas and the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
Loving County Sheriff Billy Hopper told the Times he was “dumbfounded” as to what caused the accident, noting that there was no active drilling in progress at the site. He said the individual who first called 911 told the dispatcher that a separator – a device that separates oil from gas as it is pumped – had exploded. But authorities did not find any separators in use at the well. Hopper guessed that a valve had not been closed, which would have allowed gases to build up at high pressure until they exploded through a wellhead.
Loving County is sparsely populated, with some 80 residents, but it contains more than 3,500 oil and natural gas wells. The deaths of Ortega and Magdaleno are the sixth and seventh fatalities of oil workers in the county since 2006.
“As the Houston Chronicle recently reported, the rate of oil field deaths nationwide has risen sharply in recent years,” LaGarde added. “And nearly half of those occur in Texas. We can and should do better.”
LaGarde Law Firm, P.C
3000 Weslayan, Ste. 380
Houston, TX 77027
Phone: (713) 993-0660
Toll Free: 1-866-LAGARDE
LaGarde Law Firm, P.C.
Jason M. Welborn - Of Counsel
617 S. Buchanan Street
PO Box 2053
Lafayette, LA 70501
Phone: (337) 443-4100
Toll Free: 1-866-LAGARDE
- FAQ’s – Brain Injury Lawsuits
Why are Traumatic Brain Injuries Called the “Silent Epidemic”? Traumatic brain injuries are often called the “silent epidemic” because so many people have suffered brain injuries and because so many of the victims look perfectly normal even though their lives have been changed forever by their injury. Brain injury is suffered by someone in America every 15 seconds; Approximately […]
- What to Bring When Visiting an Attorney for the First Time
Double Board Certified Attorney Richard LaGarde explains what you should bring to your first attorney meeting. Allow a few moments after clicking the play icon for video to load.
- How Social Media Can Affect Your Lawsuit – Podcast
Double Board Certified Attorney Richard LaGarde talks about how social media can affect your lawsuit. Allow a few moments after clicking the play icon for video to load.
- GTECH May Blame Texas Lottery Commission for Fun 5’s Fail
GTECH Corporation, the operator of the Texas Lottery, has disclosed that it may designate the Texas Lottery Commission as a “Responsible Third Party” in the $504 million lawsuit filed against GTECH by nearly 1,000 lottery players in Austin, Texas. The disclosure was contained at the end of GTECH’s recent Response to Request for Disclosures. Background of […]
- Contingency Fees Explained – Podcast
Double Board Certified Attorney Richard LaGarde talks about contingency fees and why they make sense for certain lawsuits. Allow a few moments after clicking the play icon for video to load.