An oil rig is one of the most hazardous places to work. If the rig is offshore, the dangers are even more profound. In fact, according to the CDC, the fatality rate for workers on offshore oil rigs is seven times higher than that of a typical worker in the United States.
Some of the most common accidents in an oil rig include slips and falls, fires and explosions, falling objects or tools, machinery or equipment, and fatigue because of the long hours.
So, the question is, what happens when you have an oil rig accident and are injured? Is your employer liable for your injuries? The answer to that depends on the facts of your case, which an oil rig injury lawyer should evaluate for you.
However, there are general scenarios that require you to contact an attorney. They include:
Immediately After Your Accident
You must speak with an oil rig injury attorney as soon as you can after your injury. Of course, the first step should always be to seek medical attention and report the matter to your employer. But try to speak to a lawyer as soon as possible to help determine if you have a case and then file it before you violate the statute of limitations.
If you report early, you will also remember the details of your accident better, and it will be easier for your lawyer to collect evidence and witness statements to strengthen your claim. The longer you wait, the more likely crucial evidence will fall through the cracks.
If Your Accident Was a Result of Employer Negligence
According to federal law, all employees are entitled to a safe work environment, conditions that do not pose a risk of serious harm, no matter where the job is. So, if you sustained injuries because of hazardous conditions that your employer refused to address, you actually have grounds for a lawsuit.
Common examples of negligence include defective machinery, lack of or loose railings, inadequate safety measures, poorly maintained floors, etc.
If Your Employer or Insurance Has Denied Your Claim
Have you been injured while working on an oil rig, and your employer or insurance refuses to pay your workers’ compensation? You are entitled to compensation under the Workers Compensation or Jones Act depending on the rig type.
However, employers and insurance companies are known to fight aggressively not to pay up when accidents occur. So, you should lawyer immediately if you are denied damages, despite evidence of negligence.
If Your Employer Attempts to Modify Your Work Benefits
Sometimes, your employer may take a sneakier route in trying to deny you the compensation you deserve by lowballing you on your deserved benefits.
The most common way they can do this is by ordering medical examinations to try and prove that you have recovered or that injuries are not that serious. Or they may try to dictate where you should go for treatment.
Contact an attorney immediately if you suspect your employer is up to no good.
An Oil Rig Injury Lawyer Will Defend Your Right to Compensation After a Workplace Accident
Oil rigs are classified among the most dangerous places to work. You may be entitled to financial compensation if you or a loved one has sustained serious injuries while working on an oil rig. Consult a qualified oil rig injury attorney as soon as possible for the right legal counsel.