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Massive Gas Line Explosion Rocks San Francisco

Posted on Thursday, February 7th, 2019 at 9:57 am    

A San Francisco gas line exploded around 1 p.m. yesterday afternoon in the Jordan Park neighborhood, swallowing the Hong Kong Lounge II restaurant and its upstairs units in flames. The spokesman for the San Francisco Fire Department (SFFD) said multiple people were rescued during the incident. As of 3:35 p.m., the fire was out, though firefighters were still working on making sure the area was free from any secondary flashes.

The blaze from the gas line caused a column of fire that reached higher than the neighborhood’s buildings. While it burned, the SFFD worked to evacuate the area and San Francisco Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White noted that firefighters had to surround and douse the fire the best they could until Pacific Gas & Electric, the major energy company in Northern California, shut off the gas line. It took around two-and-a-half hours for PG&E to finally shut down the line.

By the time all the flames had been put out, four buildings had been affected.

Although cutting the line to the area affected the gas of over 300 people and electricity to over 2,500, PG&E considered shutting down a much bigger gas line, which would have made the gas outage cover the entire city.

Image via San Francisco Fire Department/Twitter

Stopping the Fire

To access the line to stop the flow of gas, PG&E crew were forced to dig underground. The company’s spokeswoman Melissa Subbotin said they were able to stop the flow by pinching a 4-inch plastic gas line while also using a manual shut off.

Thankfully, there were no fatalities or injuries resulting from the blast and blaze, which is an even more remarkable feat when looking at the extensive damage done to the structure. While there was a moment of apprehension while looking for five missing workers, they were later found safe.

At this time, it is believed that the incident was caused by workers using a backhoe in front of the restaurant. While installing fiber optic cables for a nearby business, they apparently cut a natural gas line, resulting in the explosion.

Gas Line Explosions in the U.S.

While the exceptional emergency response to the San Francisco gas line explosion led to an astounding zero injuries or death, many involved in similar incidents around the country have not been so lucky.

In September of 2018, northern Massachusetts had a reported 50 homes catch fire from individual explosions covering three cities. Investigators to this event said that Columbia Gas didn’t tell workers to take pressure sensors offline before removing an old gas main from the system. That resulted in the sensors noticing the pressure drop, which told the system to increase pressure to the gas line. Mere moments after this occurrence, homes in North Andover, Andover, and Lawrence started exploding from the increased force in the pipes. One of the blasts caused a chimney to fall on top of an occupied vehicle, killing the driver. The Massachusetts explosions caused twenty-one injuries, two of which were firefighters.

On March 12, 2014, East Harlem shook shook when a gas explosion took down two five-story apartment buildings. A gas leak was identified as the cause of this blast. Eight people died, dozens were injured, and at least 100 families were displaced.

While incidents such as these used to demand much more attention from the news, gas line and gas pipeline accidents have become far more common in the U.S. since the early 2000’s. Rural, metropolitan, and suburban areas are all at risk from any number of errors caused by gas and energy distribution. These have lead to extensive deaths, injuries, and property damage across the country, and there may be little to slow down these occurrences as our culture becomes increasingly dependent on gas, oil, natural gas, electricity, and other forms of energy.

Seeking Legal Counsel for Compensation After a Gas Explosion

If you were injured in a gas explosion or fire, or a loved one was hurt or died in one, you may be offered a settlement by the company at fault for your pain and suffering. However, settlement amounts are determined by insurance companies, corporate lawyers, and their clients. Their best interest is rarely to ever fully rectify a situation. Instead, they are looking at their bottom line. And once someone accepts a settlement like this, they are also forced into waiving their rights to ever sue the company again should any long-term injuries or complications arise.

With over three decades of experience in cases involving workplace accidents, personal injuries, wrongful death, and serious explosions, the attorneys at Williams Kherkher will fight for your rights as the injured or bereaved to help you receive full compensation.

Contact us today to set up a free consultation where we will discuss the specifics of your case and determine your best course of action.  Call (713) 230-2200.  

 


Fatal Accident Claims A Colorado Man In Oklahoma Drilling Explosion Adding To Its Deadly History

Posted on Friday, February 1st, 2019 at 12:04 pm    

oklahoma drilling explosion killed a colorado man

Photo via Tulsa’s KOTV/NewsOn6.com

With as many as 60 workers being killed in Oklahoma while working on oil and gas drilling sites in just a five-year period, this latest incident adds fuel to this industry’s deadly history. The contractor alone Patterson-UTI has had an average of one worker a year has died over the last decade. This most recent incident was the worst in the States history with five workers instantly killed in an incident. More than 16 other workers were injured and one needed to be airlifted to a hospital by helicopter.

Patterson-UTI’s Safety Record According to OSHA

The company involved in running this rig has the worst safety record in the industry according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). In fact, they have seen almost $400,000 in fines for safety violations over the last decade. Many of the more than 140 safety violations that they have been charged with were considered serious. According to company officials, however, Patterson-UTI has vigorously worked to improve its operations along with training and implementing safety practices.

Worst Safety Record In Industry History

The company says that they have quite literally invested millions of dollars to raise their level of training as well as providing protective equipment and instilling a culture of safety among its employees. Even if this is a fact, according to data from OSHA this company is one of the country’s worst violators of safety laws in the workplace.

Oklahoma is not the only state where this company has had a slew of on-site deaths occur. According to one report put out by a US Senate committee the company had 13 deaths occur with their employees in accidents on rigs located in the state of Texas. These deaths occurred over the course of only four years. That alone is a horrendous record.

Another report indicated that 20 employees of this company had died over a five-year period between the years 2002 and 2007. When compared to similar businesses, Patterson-UTI had more than four times the death rate. That is a difference that is very difficult to account for.

Both Federal And State Agencies Investigating The Explosion

This terrible explosion happened at a natural gas drilling rig located in Quinton which is approximately 100 miles Southeast of the City of Tulsa. Although it is still under investigation and no final determination as to its cause has been made, there is a preliminary report indicating that there was an uncontrolled release of gas that led to the explosion and broke out into a raging fire. One of the on-site workers attempted to engage a mechanism that would shut down the well but he was unsuccessful at doing so.

Investigators found the bodies of the five workers who were all located in a room commonly called the dog house. It was used as an office for the crew according to authorities. This incident is considered to be the most deadly since the industrial accident that occurred in 2002 in the Gulf of Mexico, which killed 11 workers.

Oil And Gas Companies Are Inherently Careless On Safety

According to attorneys who specialize in catastrophic workplace accidents, work safety takes a second seat to production.  Employees will continue to be at risk of injury and death until safety regulations are enforced.Oil And Gas explosion accidents - Williams Kherkher lawyer

Inexperienced Workers are Sometimes Blamed For the Accidents

Industry experts say some companies have a difficult time maintaining qualified workers. For this reason, they end up hiring inexperienced workers. This inexperience makes accidents more prevalent.

Often new workers are not only unfamiliar with the safety protocols but also do not understand the common lingo for communicating on the rig. This can lead to fatal mistakes and serious accidents. Companies seriously need to implement substantial training programs that all new workers must complete successfully before working on a rig.

Losing a loved one or suffering a serious injury is devastating. Frequently, people do not want to seek legal help, but just talking with an attorney can help determine if you can get justice and compensation for you or a loved one who has been harmed in a workplace accident or explosion. Let the lawyers at Williams Kherkher get the justice that you deserve. Call us at (888) 220-0640 for a free consultation.  There is a never a charge unless we win financial awards on your behalf.


Two Workers Burned at an Industrial Plant Explosion In Conroe Last Thursday

Posted on Friday, February 1st, 2019 at 11:03 am    

Chemical Plant Explosion

Two workers were severely burned in an electrical malfunction which caused a fire at Aegion Coating Services, an industrial plant in Conroe, TX on Thursday.

Emergency personnel from the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue responded to the fire that started at an industrial plant in Conroe. Two workers that were performing repairs on an electrical panel suffered electrical burns when there was a flash explosion from inside the panel. The exact cause of the explosion and fire is yet to be determined, but it did originate from the related work that was being done on the panel.

According to the Fire Marshal from Montgomery County, interviews will need to be conducted to find out the exact source of the blaze and determine what actions were the root cause. The panel contained high-voltage circuits and supplies current to several large manufacturing machines. A flash fire erupted and burned the personnel in mere seconds. First responders mentioned that the current was typically about 400 volts passing through that panel. Both of the workers were reported to be in stable condition at the Texas Medical Center hospital later in the day.

Industrial Plants Are Major Sources Of Accidents and Injuries

The workplace, and particularly industrial workplaces, can be dangerous. Owners and managers need to pay special attention to incidents that could result in accidents and injuries to their employees. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), is tasked with investigating and preventing workplace accidents in the US., but in no way can they, or do they, prevent tragic workplace accidents.

Several common injuries are simpler to prevent, such as lifting objects that are too heavy or in an improper manner and straining the back or damaging spinal discs that can permanently  disable a worker. In these types of injuries, it’s long-term training of supervisors and employees that help curtail injuries. It’s always better to take a little more time and get the right tools and help when lifting heavy objects.

Fatigue is another problem in the workplace. Breaks are mandatory, whether the employee thinks so or not. It’s important for management to realize that employees that are fatigued are at higher risk and are involved in more accidents.

In an industrial plant such as Aegion Coating Services, there are also plenty of possible toxic gases if any of their flammable coatings catch fire. They specialize in anti-corrosion coatings for pipelines that are sold throughout the world anywhere that oil and gas products are produced or refined.

Preventing fires from spreading in an industrial plant requires a focus on safety. Keeping sources of fires, such as electrical panels, located farther away from flammable liquids and fumes helps keep fires contained to their original sources.

OSHA makes regular visits to all manufacturing facilities and makes sure that exhaust fans, dust collectors, and other safety measures are working, well maintained and inspected.

Welding, Electrical, and Flame Sources Limited

Many fires are caused not by the usual activities of the industrial plant but instead by service workers. These workers are usually third-party contractors that are unaware of flammables and use tools that create what is called “hot work” in prohibited areas. Sometimes the repair work is unavoidable but safety can be increased by limiting exposure to flammable gasses, liquids, and combustible dusts.

The Oil And Gas Industry Experiences and Accidents

While the oil and gas industry has had a steady decline in the number of accidents per year, they are still struggling to become safer for their employees.  Surprisingly, one of the most dangerous parts of the entire industry is driving motor vehicles on the road. Yearly nearly 18% of all deaths in the industry are attributed to motor vehicle accidents on roadways.

And sadly, not wearing seat belts, an easily preventable mistake, is a major reason for deaths on the road. Fatigue while driving is the second most preventable cause of those accidents and could be prevented with more breaks, less time pressure, and other fatigue countermeasures that are being studied.

Other accidents that happen on oil rigs, both onshore and offshore, have been reduced in recent years due to heavy use of machines that do much of the heavy lifting, plus more safety requirements to reduce exposure to hazardous conditions. As the industry gets more automated, with fewer workers and more machines, there should be a continued decline in accidents and injuries.

Hurt in an Industrial-Related Accident? We Can Help

The lawyers at Williams Kherkher have been handling explosion accident injuries in Houston, Texas and nationwide for years. We also handle cases such as car/truck accidents, wrongful death, and work injuries. Visit our office today or call (713) 230-2200 for a free consultation.


State Fire Marshal Completes Investigation on Sweetwater Explosion

Posted on Tuesday, January 29th, 2019 at 4:44 pm    

Cell phone footage taken after a home exploded

Image via ktxs.com

A home on Tanya Street in Sweetwater, TX exploded over the weekend. Cellphone footage showed the house smoldering as it was engulfed in flames.

A gas leak was the main cause of the explosion and destroyed the home of Harry and Viv Littleton.

The couple was inside their house on Saturday when the gas line spontaneously exploded. The two of them and their dog Sugar were able to escape the blast with minor injuries.

Harry said that they stepped out and walked across glass and nails.

The Sweetwater Fire Department on Monday morning said that the Texas Fire Marshal’s Office had finished their initial investigation of the incident. According to the fire officials, the Littletons hired a contractor to work on their gas line recently. They also said that the explosion was caused by a gas leak in the attic.

Investigators would not release the contractor’s identity.

Atmos Energy said they took readings in the area surrounding the Littleton’s home after the explosion. They also turned the gas off at one of the homes in the neighborhood that had a leak unrelated to Saturday’s accident.

Starting Over Again for the Littletons

Meanwhile, the Littletons are now looking to rebuild their home and lives. They may have lost their belongings in the explosion, but still have each other. And that’s all that matters to them.

Gas Leak Explosions in Texas Dating Back to 2006

Since 2006 a number of homes in north and central Texas have blown up along a network of pipelines operated by one of the largest gas companies in the United States.This led to nine deaths and 22 injuries.

The Atmos Energy Corp. has some of the country’s oldest pipes and largest divisions. One of these divisions, Atmos Mid-Tex, has received many state safety violations as Houston’s Centerpoint. These safety violations have been denied by Atmos Energy, stating that said violations cited by state regulators have already been fixed. They also said in a statement that their employees “wake up every day resolutely dedicated to our mission to keep people safe.”

Records show that Atmos Energy seldon owns up for explosion incidents, putting blame on outside sources such as bad weather, poor soil conditions in North Texas, lightning strikes, and mysterious sources of underground gas. As for the older pipes, the company said they pipes aren’t sources of issues and that there was only one incident that occurred involving pre-140 pipes.

Although we’d like to replace all older pipelines immediately, just like with replacing older roads and bridges, replacing pipe takes time and resources,” the company said in a statement.

Gas Leaks Explosion lawyer - williamskherkher

How to Prevent Gas Leaks

Checking your home for gas leaks is crucial. Neglecting this can cause accidents and fires. Causes of leaks include appliances with poor ventilation, appliances that were not properly installed, and faulty pipes.

Here are some ways on how to protect you and your family from a potential gas leak.

  1. Regularly check your appliances – Check your appliances regularly and make sure they are in good condition. Replace appliances showing wear and tear.
  2. Watch for the signs of leaks The number one sign of a leak is when you smell the gas in the air or in different parts of your house. Likewise, be aware of appliances that have components that look burnt.
  3. Monitor your gas lines – Call a trusted professional to look into your gas lines. Make sure to get the report of your gas appliances.
  4. Turn off the gas supply if you notice a leak.
  5. Do not smoke – Especially if you can smell a hint of gas at your home.

Losing Someone in an Explosion Accident

Explosions don’t just happen in industrial plants. You or your loved one might be at risk of gas leaks at home and sometimes these incidents happen due to another party’s negligence.

Nevertheless, if you have been injured or lost a loved in a gas explosion,  Williams Kherkher is here to help. We have been handling cases covering explosion accidents in Texas, workplace injury, and vehicle accidents for over 30 years. Visit our office or contact us today for a free consultation.  (713) 230-2200.


Natural Gas Explosions in Texas Brings Forth a Series of New Bills

Posted on Monday, January 28th, 2019 at 3:21 pm    

deadly natural gas company explosions Brings Forth a Series of New Bills

Following a number of deadly natural gas company explosions in Texas, Rep. Rafael Anchia (D-Dallas) filed a series of bills that will help increase oversight of natural gas companies in Texas.

A Series of Serious Explosions

In January of 2018, a family in North Texas was lucky to escape serious injuries when their home exploded. According to NBCDFW, hours before the explosion, the family already reported the smell of natural gas and a crew from Atmos Energy arrived to investigate.

The crew dug up the road in front of the house to find the leak while the family remained inside their home. Despite the lingering smell of natural gas, officials told them that it is safe for them to stay inside. By 3 AM, they’d asked the workers if it was still safe for them to stay because they were worried about the still-apparent smell of natural gas in the air. The workers said that there is no reason for them to evacuate.

Assured, the family went back to sleep but two hours later, they were awoken with the sound of an explosion and their house on fire.

In Stephenville, Texas, Russell McElyea suffered severe burns when his home exploded. The incident happened in the summer of 2017 when McElyea’s friend, Raul Pedroza lit the stove to cook lunch. There was an explosion, and McElyea still managed to carry his friend out the front door before the back of the house exploded. According to the two friends, they didn’t smell gas before they light up the stove.

A 12-year-old girl, Linda Michellita Rogers, also died last year in a home explosion that was linked to a gas leak.

Atmos Energy Fined

State regulators have fined Atmos Energy $16,000 over safety violations that led to the Irving house explosion last year.

For McElyea and Pedroza’s situations, the case against Atmos Energy is still ongoing.

The Bills

Rep. Anchia said that there are two bill groups — the first group deals with the Railroad Commission as an effective regulator while the second group will deal with the operators of natural gas pipelines that aim to reduce the risk of explosions. The bills are also said to increase transparency both at the Railroad Commission level and among operators. Through this, individuals may check their neighborhoods for leaks and report them immediately to gas companies.

Rep. Anchia also said that rusted, corroded, or faulty pipes in the state must be immediately replaced and infrastructure should meet 21st century standards.

Another important part of Anchia’s legislation would require gas companies to report leaks to the public in real-time through an interactive map.

deadly gas explosions attorneys

Who’s Liable?

Gas explosions often result in traumatic and fatal injuries, and severe burns frequently affect the quality of life of the victim.

In most cases, these explosions can easily be traced to the negligence of an individual or company. However, in the case of the Texas explosions that were mentioned, there is a strong possibility that the company is at fault.

Either way, having the right legal representation to help you recover from a gas explosion is very important.  The legal team at Williams Kherkher has experienced natural gas explosion attorneys that can help you get the compensation and justice that you are entitled to if another party is at fault.

We have dealt with many natural gas explosions over the last 30 years and would be honored to help you and your family fight for your right to live an explosion-free life.

We offer free consultations which you can start by calling us today at (888) 220-0640.


Fire Breaks Out in Montgomery County, Two People Injured

Posted on Friday, January 25th, 2019 at 4:46 pm    

Montgomery County plant fire

A fire broke out in a plant in Montgomery County which lead to its evacuation. The damage wasn’t sufficient enough to be a threat to the surrounding area, but all employees there were evacuated as a precautionary measure. An electrical panel exploded which led to the fire.

Two electricians were injured and had to be rushed to the hospital. Fortunately, the incident did not cause any hazardous chemicals to be leaked, so the community as a whole was safe. This is good news for all but the two who were injured.

How Common Are Work-Related Fires?

It is likely surprising to the average person to learn that there are over 3,000 workplace fires every year. These fires often lead to injuries and death.  Electrical systems are one of the leading causes of fires in the workplace.

If You Or Someone You Know Is Hurt From A Fire In The Workplace Can You Be Compensated?

Regardless of whether it’s a fire or some other reason, if you are injured your employer is required by law to cover you under workman’s compensation. If you are burned by fire or chemicals, or you’re injured from inhaling the smoke from the fire, those are injuries that should be compensated. Regardless of whether the injuries come from the fire or something else you should immediately report any and all injuries to your company and to your doctor.

What Kind Of Benefits Are Paid?

1. Medical Expenses

Any time you’re hurt at work from a fire or any other cause, workman’s compensation should pay for your visits to the doctor, for medication, and for treatment services. If your doctor decides you need to have tests run then this should also be covered. In some cases, if treatment requires travel costs then you may be compensated for that as well.

2. Temporary Disability Compensation

If your injuries cause you to be out of work then you are usually entitled to some type of disability compensation. This compensation should be paid to help cover at least part of your lost wages. When the disability is considered temporary, it is anticipated that you will be able to return to work at some point.

3. Permanent Disability Compensation

If you are determined to be permanently disabled then you’re entitled to be compensated for it. It might be that you lose part or all of certain physical abilities or mental functioning. If you had a brain injury or loss of limb or other permanent injuries, then you are entitled to be fairly compensated for your permanent disability.

4. Displacement Benefits

Most employees are unaware that if the injury causes them to be displaced and they need new training because of it, they can be compensated with a voucher to cover the cost of this retraining. This often comes when someone is found to be permanently disabled and no longer able to do the work that they were previously doing. Provided that the injury happened after 2013, there are additional benefits that may be available to you as well.

5. Death Benefits

When a family member is killed in a work-related accident, their spouse or children will be entitled to death benefits. The amount and the specifics of the compensation will depend on the situation. Under most circumstances, if these benefits are paid out by workman’s compensation, the family will not be able to sue the company for additional payment.

Work-Related Injury - fire explosion

Can You Be Treated By Your Family Physician When You Have A Work-Related Injury?

Because of the fact that many work-related injuries lead to an emergency situation, it may be that an ambulance picks you up and takes you to the hospital in which case you would be treated by the attending emergency room doctor at that time. In other cases, however, your ability to go to your own family physician will depend on whether you requested this right in writing beforehand.

Under workman’s compensation is something called ‘predesignating’. If you want to make sure that you can be seen by your family physician in the case of a work-related injury then you want to go to your company prior to any injury occurring and request the right to do this in writing. Provided that you do so, you should be able to go to that doctor should an injury at work occur.

Make Sure To Report Any Injury Immediately

When a work-related injury is significant or an emergency situation takes place, the very nature of it means that the company is notified and the person is rushed to a hospital. But in many workplace incidents, the injury is not immediately obvious and some employees will simply tell their colleague or supervisor but won’t report it officially. This is a major mistake because, under workman’s compensation, you are usually required to officially report the injury to your company within a maximum of 30 days if you want to receive compensation.

We at Williams Kherkher are always ready to provide our clients the resources and lawyers needed to help bring justice to their side. Call us today at (888) 220-0640 for a free consultation.


Water Plant Explosion And Fire

Posted on Wednesday, January 23rd, 2019 at 12:21 pm    

Lawrence County Water Plant Explosion

On Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019, there was an explosion in Lawrence County, Pennsylvania. The subsequent fire damaged the water treatment and distribution facility where the event happened. Residents living in a nearby mobile home park were left without a functioning water supply. The water facility primarily served only the Heritage Hills Mobile Home Estates. Emergency response crews, including police and firemen, were summoned to the scene.

Residents in the mobile homes previously supplied by the water plant were forced to rely on supplies provided by water buffaloes for the time being.

Workplace Fire Safety

While no one was injured or killed in this particular incident, it was still frightening for the workers and residents.  Even if power stays on, the smoke can create chaos, impact breathing, and burn your eyes. If the power does go out, automated warning systems can fail plunging the area into darkness.

Nobody goes to work expecting an emergency that day, particularly one that might happen to them. However, the reality is that emergencies like fires can happen anywhere, and in an industrial plant, explosions are a risk factor as well.

Implementing Safety Protocols

Unfortunately, incidents like this can happen to anybody anytime.  In these instances, employees and personnel onsite are immediately faced with multiple issues. What’s burning? Where is it? Do we evacuate or put it out? Are there sprinklers, containment systems, and warning devices? How long will it take for first responders to arrive? Does someone need to call them? What is the safest route of escape?

All these questions can turn into life and death matters, and there are multiple questions to be answered quickly. If the employees have been trained to follow the right protocols and plans, many fire emergencies can be prevented in the first place. However, no amount of prevention can be be foolproof, so plans must be in place that protect people and minimize property damage if and when a fire does occur.

explosion accidents attorney - williamskherkher

Making An Action Plan

Effective action plans start with brainstorming worst-case situations. A team of leaders and employees should be assembled to identify which areas where a fire might most likely start, cause the most damage, present the most danger to people on the scene and spread more quickly. An action plan should be tailored specifically to the workplace.   It might be necessary to have unique plans for each department or area. Consideration should also be given to how accessible an area might be to emergency responders summoned to the scene.

Recovery Of Costs And Compensation

Contact our lawyers at Williams Kherkher to learn more about filing a lawsuit regarding situations like these. Our explosion accident attorneys can also provide you with expert insight and legal guidance. If you have a loved one who has been harmed in this type of accident, we are always ready to help. Call us now at (888) 220-0640 for a free consultation.


Propane Tank Explodes in Connecticut, Leaving One Man Injured & Seven Families Displaced

Posted on Monday, January 21st, 2019 at 4:28 pm    

Propane Tank Explodes in Connecticut

Image via connecticut.news12.com

A propane tank explosion in Bridgeport caused an injury and displaced seven families on January 21 at around 10:00 a.m. as reported by Fox 61. The explosion is said to have happened at 49 White Street.

According to authorities, the explosion caused a small fire but it was quickly extinguished. The powerful explosion has a left a hole on the side of the house while the people around the area at the time of the explosion were terrified.

A man who lives on the first floor got second-degree burns and was taken to the Bridgeport Hospital. The Red Cross also took over to provide temporary shelter for the families.

The firefighters said that the explosion may be due to the improper use of the propane tank, which was discovered providing power to a portable heater.

Major Propane Explosions in Connecticut

In September 2013, a 500-gallon underground propane tank exploded at 305 Webbs Hill Road in North Stamford.

A home in Vernon exploded in August of 2017 due to a propane leak that sent six people to the hospital.

These cases in the state only show the dangers of propane tanks when improperly stored or used. Residential gas explosions are more common than you think and they can be fatal to those nearby.

The Common Causes of Propane Explosion

Propane is a synthetic material used for various purposes such as torches, barbecue grills, central heating, etc. However, it is known to have a high risk of explosion if not used properly.

These are some of the most common causes of a propane explosion:

  • Improper Application of Odor Chemical – propane is naturally odorless, but the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) required a chemical to be added to to it easily detect a leak. If not done correctly, a leak may go undetected for weeks, which can lead to an explosion.
  • Open Bleeder Valve – in the case of excess internal pressure, the bleeder valve allows propane to escape the tank to relieve it from pressure thus preventing it from explosion. However, in the event that a bleeder valve is left open, any exposure to an open flame can easily cause a small fire. Also, if there are other propane tanks nearby, it could cause other bleeder valves to open from the heat.
explosion left a hole on the side of the house

Image via connecticut.news12.com

Propane Explosion Inside the Home

Propane is heavier than air so it settles in low enclosed areas. A small stray flame or spark may cause the gas to ignite and lead to widespread damage.

In many homes, gas tanks are stored in the basement. Nonetheless, it is highly recommended that propane cylinders are stored upright outside on a dry, flat, and non-flammable surface.

Surviving a Propane Explosion

The Bridgeport case left a man with serious burns while a number of families were left homeless. In cases like these, it is crucial to have legal representation to ensure that your rights are protected and you’re compensated for your losses and injuries.

In many situations, the cause of a propane gas tank fire is from a violation of safety practices or codes, a failure to warn, improper storage, a lack of safety training, or any combination of these. Having an attorney by your side will help identify the cause of the accident and get justice and compensation for your family.

There are situations wherein propane companies and component manufacturers may attempt to deny a defect. A good attorney can help determine what parties are at fault.

If you have been injured or a victim of an explosion, Williams Kherkher will fight for you.  You can count on us to help you get the compensation that you need from the loss or any other injuries that may put a halt to your normal life. Give us a call today with any questions and a free consultation.  Call (713) 230-2200.


Retired Firefighter Killed In Lubbock Area Explosion

Posted on Sunday, January 20th, 2019 at 12:45 pm    

Quanah Explosion Killed Retired Firefighter

Photo via KSWO7News

Two fires broke out inside of a Lubbock area auto repair store yesterday. The first resulted in an explosion that killed a man.

Retired Firefighter Killed in the Explosion

Three individuals were inside the shop when the initial fire started. Two of them were outside, but one man was still indoors and was later identified as 69-year-old Robert Floyd Pierce. The two men outside survived and were taken to UMC Lubbock.

Sheriff Laughery identified Pierce as a retired firefighter, having served in the Vernon fire department. The sheriff noted that this was a tragedy and offered prayers to the deceased’s family.

Investigation Underway

Fire marshalls were initially unable to determine the cause of the explosion. The second fire happened in the middle of the evening while press were still reporting from the scene.  It was later determined that the fires were the result of a malfunctioning tank and additional details will follow.

Photo via KSWO7News

Photo via KSWO7News

Accidental Explosions Of Man-Made Nature

Accidental explosions from man-made sources are somewhat rare but not unheard of. The largest was in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia during World War I when a freighter full of ammunition collided with another vessel. The resulting explosion killed over 2,000 people, which was more than the combat losses Nova Scotia suffered in the actual conflict.

Explosions today are significantly less severe thanks to more than a century of advancement in technology, awareness, and safety techniques. Yet, they still happen. According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, several hundred people die annually at work from explosions and fires.

Consulting An Attorney After An Explosion Or Fire

If you or a loved one is injured in a fire or explosion, obviously seek medical attention immediately, but also consult an attorney as quickly as possible.  The lawyers at Williams Kherkher are here to help. We have been handling workplace accidents, explosions and fires since 1983.  Call us at (888) 220-0640 today for a free confidential consultation.

Never do business with a lawyer who says over the phone they can win your case without hearing the particulars first. No professional legal representation can guarantee a win.

 

Have you or a loved one been injured in an accident?

Contact us today at (888) 220-0640 to get a free, confidential case evaluation.