The Gulf Coast has a high concentration of chemical plants and refineries, creating an environment in which personal injury, property damage, or wrongful death often occur. The Louisiana refinery accident lawyers of Lambert, Zainey, Smith & Soso have an impressive record of handling refinery and chemical plant injury lawsuits across more than 35 years of practice. Plant explosions are extremely dangerous and often deadly. If you or a loved one has suffered a serious injury in an explosion accident or been exposed to dangerous chemicals, a refinery and chemical plant explosion lawyer from our firm wants to hear from you.
Following a refinery or chemical plant accident, it may be difficult to determine the cause and who is at fault. The most common causes of catastrophic explosions at oil refineries and chemical plants include improper maintenance, unsafe design, defective products, violations of industry codes, and improper training. Also, many oil, gas, and chemical plants in the Gulf Coast region are old and have not been appropriately upgraded to improve safety. Furthermore, refineries and other plants use subcontractors in their facilities, many of which are untrained and inexperienced. The owners of the facility and their service providers are all potential defendants in a catastrophic accident or explosion case.
If you or a loved one have been injured at a refinery, it is important that you know your options. Louisiana has specific laws regarding employers, contractors, and different types of employees, which determine what a refinery worker’s rights are when injured on the job. The decision to sue your employer or even a company with which your employer does business is an important choice that should take into account all options and strategies.
Common Industrial Accidents That Can Occur at Plants, Refineries, or Facilities
Complicated machinery, toxic and combustible materials, and heavy equipment and vehicles are just a few of the things that make petrochemical plants, refineries, and similar facilities such a dangerous place to work. These include:
- Slip and falls
- Getting struck by falling objects
- Fires and explosions
- Exposure to toxic materials
- Smoke or toxic fume inhalation
- Equipment malfunctions due to improper maintenance/use
- Getting caught in machines
In most instances, these types of accidents could have been avoided if employees had been adequately trained and supervised and if employers had maintained a safe workplace.
Common Causes of Refinery Accidents
Most of the accidents that take place at refineries and other petrochemical processing facilities are the result of negligence. These include accidents resulting from:
- Improperly training workers
- Equipment/machinery not properly inspected/ maintained
- Lack of supervision
- Human error or carelessness
- Dangerous work or conditions
- Inadequate safety equipment and procedures
Accident investigations often show that a refinery or plant accident could have been avoided if the proper safety and maintenance protocols had been enforced.
What to Do to Protect Your Rights After a Refinery Accident
After being injured in a refinery or plant accident it’s important to protect your rights. The first thing to do is seek medical attention and notify your employer of your injuries. Next, contact Lambert, Zainey, Smith & Soso to discuss your case with an experienced refinery accident lawyer. We can advise you on the best way to proceed with your personal injury claim and represent your interests if you need to file a personal injury claim against an employer or third party.
Compensation After a Refinery Accident
Depending on the circumstances surrounding your accident, you may be entitled to collect compensation for a wide range of damages including:
- Current and ongoing medical expenses
- Lost wages and employment
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of companionship
We can help you assign a dollar value to your damages that adequately compensate you for the losses caused by your accident.
If the injuries prove to be fatal for the worker, their family can recover compensation for funeral and other expenses by filing a wrongful death lawsuit.
How Long Do I Have to File a Refinery Accident Claim?
The statute of limitations laws vary from state to state. In Louisiana, you generally only have one year from the date of your accident in which to file a personal injury claim. If you wait longer than that, the court may refuse to hear your case.
How Our Lawyers Can Help After an Accident
Lambert, Zainey, Smith, & Soso can assist you in many ways after you’ve been injured in an accident at a refinery or petrochemical accident:
- Investigate your accident
- Gather the evidence needed to support your injury claim
- Help you avoid mistakes that could reduce your settlement
- Handle all negotiations with the insurance company
- Handle all administrative requirements
- Represent you in court
Most personal injury cases never make it to court; insurance companies prefer to settle rather than risk an expensive judgment by a judge or jury. It’s important to have a refinery accident lawyer who is both an experienced negotiator and a skilled litigator to ensure your rights are protected whether the case ends in a settlement agreement or a court fight.
CONTACT A LOUISIANA REFINERY AND CHEMICAL PLANT ACCIDENT INJURY ATTORNEY
Lambert, Zainey, Smith, & Soso has been protecting the rights of petrochemical workers since the 1970s. We understand how refineries and other petrochemical processing facilities work. We know how easily an accident can happen when these facilities aren’t properly managed. This helps us more effectively represent workers injured in plant accidents while working at chemical plants and oil refineries.
If you’ve been injured in an accident at a refinery, plant, or factory that was caused by the negligence of a coworker or employer, it’s important to take immediate action to protect your rights.
Contact Lambert, Zainey, Smith, & Soso online or call us at 800-521-1750 to schedule a free, introductory consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney to discuss your case. We’ll listen to your story, answer any legal questions you may have, and provide honest, professional advice on the best way to proceed with your claim.
Worried that you can’t afford the services of a refinery accident lawyer? Don’t — most of our personal injury cases are handled on a contingency basis. That means there are no upfront costs for our representation; we only collect a fee as a percentage of your settlement.