Loss of Hearing
The oil and gas industry has dangerous aspects to the work. It is obvious that a potential oil rig blowout is more dangerous than a traditional workplace incident. However, ongoing exposure to dangerous conditions could lead to severe injuries, such as the complete loss of hearing. If you or a loved one have received loss of hearing due to an oil and gas accident, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your injuries.
Oil Rig Accidents
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, oil and gas workers were subjected to fatal accidents at a rate seven times higher than all other occupations in the United States, between 2003 and 2010. This number has been relatively stable since the early 1990s. Hearing loss is not one of the most commonly discussed injuries in the oil and gas industry, but it is one which can plague workers for the rest of their career. Exposure to recurring trauma can lead to loss of hearing after so many years.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 23,000 people lose their hearing in workplace accidents each year, resulting in approximately 15 percent of all workplace injuries. The human ear can withstand noises to a certain level. Anything greater than this level runs the risk of causing permanent damage to the individual and their hearing.
Unfortunately, noise violations are not often reported by employees or employers, and therefore workers are continuously subjected to higher volumes of sound without ongoing regulation. The oil and gas industry unfortunately involves ongoing exposure to loud noises through equipment and machinery, which often supersede the human hearing limitations. Ongoing exposure to these high frequency sound waves could lead to severe damage and even the loss of hearing.
Oil and gas workers have several options available to them after a devastating accident results in their hearing loss. Many workers will be able to bring a claim for damages under the state workers’ compensation statute. Unfortunately, states like Texas do not require every employer to maintain workers’ compensation insurance. Therefore, injured employees may look to federal maritime law or traditional state personal injury statutes.
In a claim for damages, victims of a devastating oil and gas accident may be entitled to bring a claim for damages which includes the following:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Future earnings
- Pain and suffering
An experienced personal injury attorney will be able to assist you in determining what statute is appropriate to bring a claim under, as well as the total amount of damages. It is important to bring a claim as soon as possible after discovering the scope of your injury, as the limitations period will begin running from that date.
Malley Law Firm | Houston Personal Injury Attorney
If you or a loved one have been involved in an accident on an oil rig leading to loss of hearing, do not hesitate to contact the Malley Law Firm. Tony Malley has years of experience in assisting his clients with claims after a devastating injury leads them with hearing loss. Contact our Beaumont or Houston offices today for your initial free consultation.