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Dallas Oilfield Accident Lawyers

Fighting for Victims of Land Rig Accidents in Longview, Marshall, & Nationwide

Our state is the nation’s leader in oil production. With over 5 billion barrels of proven reserves, the oil and natural gas industry supports 24.3 percent of the state’s economy and 14.3 percent of total employment. 

But that comes at a cost: Texas oilfield workers account for more than half of the industry's severe injuries. 

Because workers face serious workplace hazards on a regular basis, the oil and gas industry is one of the most dangerous in the United States. According to the Department of Labor, 1,400 injuries occur in the oil and gas industry every year on average. In 2014, 199 people died from fatal oilfield injuries in Texas. Most of them happened because oil and gas employers delayed equipment maintenance, hired contractors without safety training, or fostered a culture of negligence and silence. This puts hard-working derrick operators, roughnecks, and truckers at serious risk. 

Our Dallas oilfield accident attorneys help oil and gas workers recover lost wages, medical costs, and more after work accidents. We’ve beaten oil companies in court and gotten workers the resources they needed to rebuild.

If you’ve been hurt in an oilfield accident in Rusk County, Gregg County, Harrison County, Fort Worth, or anywhere in the state, contact our Dallas oilfield injury lawyers for a free consultation: (888) 493-1629.

Representing Workers Injured in Oilfield Accidents

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Some of the Biggest Victories Against the Oil & Gas Industry

Oil and gas companies are some of the most well defended companies in the world. Their resources for litigation are virtually endless, with an army of highly skilled lawyers whose chief job is shielding the company from liability. 

Yet our firm has been able to beat them again and again:

  • $209 million verdict for a fatally injured oilfield worker’s family.
  • $139 million settlement secured a week before trial due to intensive preparation.
  • $72 million settlement for a worker who lost his arm in an oilfield accident.
  • $36.5 million settlement secured after intensive trial preparation.

There’s one reason we’re able to consistently take down bigger, stronger, and more richly resourced defendants in court: we hold nothing back. Our firm prepares every case for trial to give plaintiffs their best shot at winning at trial. Consequently, our team has seen the inside of a courtroom more than most attorneys do in a lifetime.

Taking on Cases Against Large Companies in the Oil & Gas Industry

For an injured oilfield worker, the thought of taking on their employer may seem overwhelming or impossible. But the truth is that Arnold & Itkin has beaten the biggest names in the oil and gas industry. While our firm can be outspent or outnumbered, we've never been outworked . It's our willingness to put enormous time, effort, and attention into each case that's made us the premier advocate in Dallas for oilfield workers nationwide. 

Our Dallas oilfield accident attorneys handle cases against companies such as the following:

Taking on leading oil companies is how our firm earned a reputation for aggressive, effective advocacy. It’s the approach that secured $20+ billion in verdicts and settlements for plaintiffs, and it’s an approach we continue to use today.

In the past 12 months, we’ve filed a large number of oil field-related claims for injured plaintiffs:

With such dangerous jobs,  injuries are often dire and life-changing. It’s our duty to make sure each of them gets the best possible chance at justice from the companies responsible. Each of these cases represents a person’s life—that’s the reality that keeps us working relentlessly on behalf of the injured and wronged.

Why Oilfield Accidents Are Serious

The toxic and explosive nature of oil and gas is what makes oilfield accidents so serious. Often, even the slightest issue can trigger an accident that has devastating consequences for workers. Those who survive an oilfield accident often have lasting injuries because of toxic exposure and explosions. Often, these injuries are serious enough to be considered catastrophic—a term that means a person's quality of life has been permanently altered.

Injuries often sustained during oilfield accidents include:

Oilfield accidents are often deadly, and families of deceased workers deserve answers from those responsible. Our Dallas personal injury law firm fights for justice on behalf of families grieving from a wrongful death in the oilfields.

What Causes Injury to Oilfield Workers in Dallas

So what are the actual factors that lead to an oilfield injury? The nature of the work is a major factor. Moving machinery, volatile gases, and grueling manual labor contribute to oilfield accidents.

Oilfield workers deal with many hazards on a daily basis:

  • Equipment failure
  • Fire and explosion risk
  • Well blowouts
  • Fracking accidents
  • Falling from a height
  • Exhaustion

Below, we dive into the specific dangers of working on an oil rig, the health impact of explosions and fires, and other serious oilfield hazards. We'll start with the most critical part of oilfield operations: the land rig. 

Dangers at the Derricks: Why Land Rig Accidents Happen

There's always been inherent risk to oil and gas extraction. 

Malfunctions in extraction equipment can trigger explosions. Transporting substances within pipelines and trucks can prove just as dangerous. Fracking exposes workers to dangerous levels of benzene—a colorless gas that damages the nervous system, kidney, liver, and immune system. Even cleaning storage tanks comes with serious risks: workers doing routine cleaning have asphyxiated when tanks weren't properly emptied of dangerous gases. 

But the leading source of severe injuries on land rigs? Machinery

A derrick is an astoundingly complex machine, with pumps, chains, and drill bits always in motion. When you combine long hours with complex machinery and high-risk procedures, it's no surprise that workers suffer serious harm. OSHA data found that 1 in 3 serious injuries in the oil and gas industry involved the hands. They also found that oil and gas workers suffer from amputations, eye injuries, and hospitalizations more than workers in any other sector. 

According to Marketplace, the risk of oilfield injuries are not surprising to experts. “We’ve known for quite a few years that it’s a high hazard industry,” said Kyla Retzer, an epidemiologist with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health who focuses on safety and health in oil and gas extraction.

But some inherent risk doesn't mean workers ought to endure all risks. 

All employers are responsible for creating a safe workplace by mitigating risks. To prevent accidents, there are strict rules entitling derrick workers to proper protective gear and safety training. Unfortunately, companies regularly disregard workplace safety regulations, resulting in burn injuries, expensive medical bills, or even death.

A key issue is that companies typically hire contractors to operate these wells. Contractors don’t get mandated safety training and protocols created for each job site. As a result, many people operating these rigs are putting themselves at extreme risk; hand injuries among subcontractors made up 1 in 4 of all serious injuries in the oil and gas industry.

When our Dallas land rig explosion lawyers investigate an incident, we often contend with multiple defendants—none of whom take responsibility for what happened. Fortunately for our clients, we've overcome this issue many times before.

Driving While Exhausted: A Common Cause of Dallas Oilfield Injuries

However, as dangerous as the derrick may be, an enormous portion of oilfield casualties are the result of car accidents. CDC data shows that 40% of work-related injuries in oil and gas extraction are from transportation accidents. Transportation includes both commercial vehicles traveling to and from the oilfields as well as employees commuting.

Oilfields are typically located in remote areas, so vehicle crashes are an existential problem for oil and gas workers.

When an oil boom occurs, such as the one currently happening in the Permian Basin, small country roads become dangerous. Roads designed for light use are suddenly covered with hundreds of large trucks and thousands of vehicles transporting workers to the oilfields.

Along with increased traffic, oilfield workers face heightened risk from driver fatigue. Long shifts and commutes deprive workers of adequate sleep, impairing reaction time and alertness. Falling asleep at the wheel is a common problem and, each year, tragic accidents claim multiple lives because an exhausted driver falls asleep at the wheel.

Some parts of the U.S. have residents referring to their local highways as “Death Highways,” and they attribute this grim title to the sudden influx of vehicles caused by oil and gas extraction.

Potential Dangers Faced by Oilfield Workers in Longview & Dallas

Oilfield engineers and technicians are fully aware that they are in a dangerous line of work and know that they should take extra precautions to prevent accidents. However, accidents are not often caused at their level of operations, but instead by the negligent behavior of supervisors and employers.

Owners and supervisors may be held liable for:

  • Explosions, fires, and exposure to toxic chemicals: Workers are exposed to dangerous chemicals or fuel when these chemicals are not being appropriately secured.
  • Falling objects: When employees work at great heights, they’re more likely to drop a tool or a piece of equipment on another worker. The tools used by workers at elevated heights should be secured.
  • Faulty equipment: Wear and tear of equipment contributes to oilfield injuries. Defective equipment may expose workers to flammable chemicals and cause an explosion. It is the employer’s responsibility to schedule routine maintenance to keep machinery working properly.
  • Slips and falls: It is an employer’s responsibility to warn employees of potential hazards. If workers fall, it may also be due to improper safety measures, like missing guardrails or harnesses.

Dallas Oilfield Explosions & Fires

Anywhere that volatile materials are extracted, used, and stored, you have a heightened risk of explosion or fire.

In oil and gas extraction, there’s no shortage of fuel or ignition sources. Flammable gases come from wells, trucks, production equipment, tanks, and more. Welding equipment, friction, electricity, and cigarettes have all been identified as potential ignition sources. Flammable gas has been ignited by static enough times for OSHA to issue a hazard bulletin.

The trauma of an explosion can’t be overstated. Our Dallas land rig explosion attorneys are national leaders in workplace explosion litigation, so we've seen firsthand how survivors and families endure heavy burdens from fires and explosions.

Explosions have been known to cause:

Our firm also knows that trying to escape an explosion leads to grievous harm as well. In the moment, people can’t think clearly, so their attempts to run away can lead to broken bones, lacerations, concussions, and more.

All About Dallas Oilfields

Texas produces more than a third of the nation’s crude oil. Much of production is concentrated in North Texas, including the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Since the 1930s, when petroleum was discovered near Kilgore just east of Dallas, the region has held its status as an oil and gas hub. Located on a portion of the Barnett Shale and near the Eagle Ford Shale and the Haynesville Shale, Dallas County is home to hundreds of oil and gas workers and their families.

H.L. Hunt (1889-1974), an oil tycoon and billionaire, lived in Dallas and contributed to the city’s standing as one of the leading oil producers in the United States. Today, some of the biggest players in oil and gas are headquartered in Dallas. This includes Energy Transfer, the HollyFrontier Corporation, Hunt Oil Company, EnLink Midstream, and Merit Energy Company. Oilfields and oilfield service companies in the area include TW Oilfield Services, Purity Oilfield Services, Rix Energy Services, Inflow Petroleum Resources, Moss Petroleum, Rockhound Exploration, DDC Oil and Gas, Goodnight Midstream, Cielo Exploration, Imagery Exploration, and many others.

Dallas is widely recognized as the cultural and commercial hub of North Texas. It is the ninth-most populous city in the United States, with a population of approximately 1.3 million people. 9 Fortune 500 companies call Dallas home, while 22 are located within the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. The initial establishment and growth of the Dallas-Fort Worth area can be attributed to the construction of major railroad lines through the region, allowing for the transportation of cattle, cotton, and oil. Dallas is now home to a major inland port, the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, and interstate highways that have reaffirmed the city’s stance as a key transportation hub.

Dallas, TX: Helpful Links & Resources

Oilfield Injury Attorneys Serving Gregg County, Rusk County & Beyond

We represent clients in Dallas, Longview, throughout the state, and nationwide. We provide powerful legal representation to help clients recover the best possible results for their case. Dallas oilfield accident attorneys at Arnold & Itkin know how difficult it is after an oilfield accident. An accident may appear to be the employee's fault, but in reality, employers cause accidents when they fail to train workers or implement good safety practices.

If you have sustained injuries in an oilfield accident in Longview, Gregg County, Rusk County, or anywhere in the state or country, it is vital to contact an attorney as soon as possible. An attorney from our Dallas personal injury law firm can investigate your accident and help you obtain the best possible results for your case. We have received billions of dollars for our clients, setting verdict and settlement records nationwide. We have the resources to help you secure your future.

Contact our Dallas oilfield work accident attorneys today for a free case review at (888) 493-1629!

Common Questions

  • Why Do Oilfield Accidents Happen?

    Many of the incidents handled by our Dallas oilfield accident lawyers are caused by the negligence of one or more parties—most often employers and contracted companies. A lack of safety training, equipment, poor maintenance, and other cost-cutting tactics cause serious accidents that harm workers and their families. When this happens, the parties that could’ve prevented an accident but didn’t should be held accountable.
  • Should I Get an Attorney After an Oilfield Accident?

    Yes, getting help from an attorney will put someone in your corner who will make sure any settlement offers are in your best interest. While it might seem like the other side is trying to do the right thing, initial settlements are often low and don’t account for the complete cost of an oilfield accident. Our lawyers will investigate your claim, work to hold negligent parties accountable, and fight for the financial recovery you and your family deserve.
  • How Much Does Hiring a Dallas Oilfield Injury Law Firm Cost?

    Getting help from our firm costs nothing up front. We cover all costs associated with a case and only collect a payment if we get results for a client. We do this because people come to us after during one of the most difficult moments of their lives, and finances are the last thing we want them to be worried about. Additionally, working this way means that anyone can afford our help.
  • What Causes the Worst Oil and Gas Accidents in Dallas?

    The vast majority of oil and gas accidents are triggered by unique factors, but the underlying causes are typically the same. When our Dallas oil and gas accident attorneys investigate serious injuries or catastrophic explosions, the culprits are typically: cuts to safety spending, neglect of maintenance, and poor management. As a boom-and-bust business, oil and gas extraction needs accountability in order to ensure workers are provided with reasonably safe worksites.

  • What Is the Risk of “Flash Fires” in Dallas Oilfield Accidents?

    Flash fires combust when flammable gas intermixes with the oxygen in the air. Once gas diffuses in a given area, all it takes is an ignition source: heat, friction, static, even a cigarette butt. Flash fires burn within seconds, capable of traveling before workers have a chance to get to cover. The risk of flash fires makes PPE critical for oil and gas workers.
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