The Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas is known to be a well-paying oil and gas company, who treats their employees decently. They're known for having thousands of employees who all receive an above average paycheck for their work. Though, as with any decent paying job, that can often come at a price. For some people the price they pay is their time, their hobbies, etc.; for these workers that price can be their own life.
According to reports, derrickman Julio Barrera, 25, had called his wife discussing how he was scared about his upcoming job requirement, and he was uncertain of what he should do. This phone call was made on September 1, 2009 and his wife Claudia Hernandez discusses that they were working in Webb County at the time of the innocent and were having a hard time stabilizing and erecting a derrick. OSHA reports state that the tower Barrera was working on was swaying and that he was afraid to go up into it. However, when on the phone with his wife he discussed that his employer threatened he would lose his job if he did not go up into his tower.
Sadly, Barrera's convictions about the tower were correct, because as he climbed the 25 feet derrick owned by the Coastal Drilling Land Co. LLC, the structure was unstable and it fell over and the victim was crushed to death underneath. Allegedly Barrera had to go up there to fix a metal pin that was in the frame, and by the time the derrick crashed he had still be unable to fix the pin.
Michael Rivera, an OSHA director of the Corpus Christi office who monitors the Eagle Ford Shale specifically claims that he has worked eight many good people in that company; individuals who are doing everything possible to keep their people safe. Unfortunately, there are also many people who are skirting around the procedures in order to save time; thought they are doing so at the expense of their employees. While these negligent employees may not have the intention of hurting or killing their workers, by viewing time and money as more important than safety; death and injury often a direct result.
The death toll number just continues to rise for those who work in the oil and gas industry here in Texas. According to OSHA, since 2009 Eagle Ford has seen 11 fatalities of the 35 recorded deaths investigated by OSHA, though many believe this number is significantly higher. Numerous reports show that just last year, nationally there were an estimated 4,100 workers in the gas and oil industry who lost their lives. If you have been recently injured in one of these accidents, or have lost a loved one on the job, please contact a Houston injury attorney at Arnold & Itkin LLP today! Our firm will help you seek the compensation you and your family deserve after a workplace injury or death.