Arnold & Itkin Holds Executives Accountable for Blast

In a previous blog, we reported on the litigation for the Williams Olefins explosion from 2013. As the factory sits on the Ascension-Iberville border, there has been litigation in both parishes. Our firm is representing 4 injured workers in the Iberville suit, and our case is simple: we are going to prove that the fire (which killed 2 and injured 114) was caused by deliberate disregard by officials at Williams Company Inc., as well as factory managers.

Our firm was recently featured in The Advocate, an online publication devoted to litigation news. The report highlighted our aggressive position against both executives—who were responsible for approving all safety measures at the plant—and factory managers, who are normally responsible for the safety of their employees. Our firm used the term “shell game” to describe the passing of responsibility between officials for this incident.

The Cause of the Blast Explained

If you don’t remember, the factory ignited when reboilers were over-pressurized and exploded. However, the explosion couldn’t have been a surprise. Outside agencies in 2006 and 2010 warned factory officials of the risk the reboilers posed, but nothing was done to fix them. As operation continued, the risk compounded.

Describing the utter lack of foresight demonstrated by not fixing the issue, Attorney Kurt Arnold said:

This isn't someone driving down the road who looked around and got distracted. This is someone who knew they had to drive 35 miles and left with only five gallons of gas.

He asserted that the repairs would have taken “five minutes and five dollars,” requiring something as simple as a car seal in order to fix the valves. Regardless, officials ordered no repairs.

We look forward to demonstrating our opponents’ responsibility in court. More than anything, our firm looks forward to helping our clients get the financial support they need to heal and move forward.

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