Cause of Bursting Pipe is Still Unknown
As of September 25, the cause of the water pipe accident that occurred in Karnes County on Tuesday, September 24 is still unknown. Investigators from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Railroad Commission of Texas arrived in Karnes County the day after the accident to inspect the water pipe that burst Tuesday morning. The explosion injured six workers—four of which were airlifted to the burn unit at San Antonio Military Medical Center, and two were driven from the site, located west of Falls City, to neighboring hospitals. All injured workers are expected to survive the accident.
Further Information Regarding the Event
It was determined that three of the injured workers worked at Berry Bros, which is a general oil-field contractor. The other three victims were employed by Sprint Safety, a company based in Houston that concentrates on efficiency. Freeport McMoRan Oil & Gas, an offshoot of Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold, reportedly owns the rig. Freeport McMoRan Oil & Gas is one of the largest material companies in the world, and the Texas Commission for Environmental Quality's records show that Freeport owns and operates 21 rigs throughout Karnes County alone. A majority of the rigs only began operating a few months ago, but none of the 21 rigs have any violations on record.
A spokesman for Freeport did confirm on Wednesday that the company owns an Indonesian gold mine in Papua that had a tunnel collapse in May 2013, which killed 28 workers. The collapsing tunnel caused the Indonesian government to review their safety measures regarding the entire country's mines. Freeport also reportedly held their own investigation prior to reopening the mine in June of 2013.
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