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What are the main hazards of working on an oil rig?

On Behalf of | May 4, 2023 | Oil Field Accidents, Workplace Accidents

The work of an oil rig worker is unquestionably one of the most hazardous jobs in the world. Extracting oil and gas poses extreme danger to workers’ lives and health. 

Here are some of the most common occupational hazards that oil workers face:

1. Fire and explosion 

Oil rigs have an enormous amount of highly flammable materials, so the slightest spark can cause massive explosions and fires, endangering workers’ lives. 

2. Chemical exposure

Oil drilling requires using chemicals that are toxic and hazardous to health. Workers are exposed to these chemicals when handling them or working in contaminated areas. Prolonged exposure can lead to skin irritation, respiratory problems, neurological damage, and other health complications.

3. Slips, trips, and falls

Oil rigs often have wet and slippery conditions or obstacles in pathways. A slip or fall can cause severe injuries to a worker, including broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, or even death.

4. Struck-by/caught-in

There is large equipment and several moving parts on an oil rig. Struck-by/caught-in accidents frequently occur when moving machinery collides with stationary objects or employees’ body parts become trapped in equipment or materials. Such incidents can lead to severe injuries, including loss of limbs.

5. Confined spaces

“Confined space” refers to an area with limited entry and exit points not meant for human occupancy. These spaces might include tanks, vessels, cargo spaces, and more. Working in such environments can be incredibly risky due to hazardous situations such as asphyxiation, explosions, and other accidents. 

Oil rig work is inherently dangerous, and accidents can occur despite the best safety efforts. If you are an oil rig worker injured on the job, it is essential to seek prompt medical attention. If the accident was caused by someone else’s negligence, such as an employer, contractor, or third party, an injured worker may be eligible to receive compensation for lost wages and medical expenses.