Working on an offshore oil rig is one of the most hazardous occupations. The combination of heavy machinery, harsh weather conditions, and the constant risk of fire and explosion creates a dangerous environment. 

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Below is a look at the top five most common offshore oil rig accidents and how an Armstrong Lee & Baker LLP maritime accident lawyer can help you obtain compensation if you’ve suffered injuries due to another party’s negligence.

1. Blowouts

A blowout is one of the most catastrophic accidents on an offshore oil rig. It happens when there is an uncontrolled release of crude oil or natural gas from a well, often leading to explosions and fires. Blowouts can cause severe injuries, fatalities, and extensive environmental damage.

As with many maritime accidents, offshore oil rig accidents typically occur due to negligence. For example, a blowout preventer could have failed due to a manufacturer’s defect, or the oil and gas company might not have trained employees on proper drilling techniques.

2. Falls

Falls are a significant risk on oil rigs due to the multiple levels, open edges, and slippery surfaces. Workers can fall from heights or into the sea, often resulting in severe injuries or fatalities. Employers may fail to provide proper fall protection or promptly take care of wet or oily surfaces. Poor lighting and visibility due to an employer’s negligence can also play a role.

3. Equipment Failures

Heavy machinery and equipment are integral to oil rig operations, but their failure can lead to serious accidents. Equipment failures can cause crush injuries, amputations, and other severe injuries. Common reasons for equipment failures include inadequate maintenance, manufacturing defects, and improper training.

4. Fires and Explosions

Given the explosive nature of oil and gas, fires and explosions constantly threaten oil rigs. These incidents can result in widespread injuries, fatalities, and environmental harm. Employers commonly contribute to these devastating accidents by failing to address issues like gas leaks or electrical faults. Improper storage of flammable materials can also cause a fire or explosion.

5. Transportation Accidents

Transportation to and from offshore rigs often involves helicopters and boats. Accidents during transportation can be fatal due to the challenging conditions and the remote location of oil rigs.

Reasons these accidents occur include the following:

  • Adverse weather conditions
  • Mechanical failures
  • Pilot or operator error

How a Maritime Accident Lawyer Can Help

A maritime accident lawyer can provide valuable assistance in obtaining compensation. Here are some of the ways they can help:

  • Investigating the accident: A skilled maritime accident lawyer will investigate to determine the accident’s cause. They’ll gather evidence such as maintenance records, safety logs, eyewitness accounts, and expert testimony.
  • Identifying liability: Offshore oil rig accidents can involve multiple parties, including employers, equipment manufacturers, and third-party contractors. Your attorney will identify all liable parties to ensure you receive full compensation.
  • Navigating maritime laws: Maritime law, also known as admiralty law, governs legal disputes related to offshore activities. A maritime accident lawyer has specialized knowledge of these laws and can navigate the complex legal landscape on your behalf.

Get in Touch With Our Houston Maritime Lawyers to Learn More

Seeking the help of a maritime accident lawyer is crucial if you’re injured in an offshore oil rig. A personal injury attorney from Armstrong Lee & Baker LLP will do everything possible to help you get the money you deserve. Schedule a free consultation by contacting us online or calling 832-402-6637.

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Joshua Lee believes in aggressive, tough advocacy and a client-centered approach to every case. Joshua draws from a wide body of experiences and a robust understanding of the law. Joshua graduated from the New York University School of Law in New York City, which is considered among the best law schools in the world.