Offshore oil and gas drilling represents an early stage in the process of energy production. Offshore workers in California could discover oil and gas reserves that provide gasoline, jet fuel, electricity, and heat throughout the world. Working on an offshore rig comes with many dangers, and some workers face potentially fatal threats. Some resources suggest the number of fatalities goes underreported.
Fatalities and offshore oil rigs
Among the most publicized offshore oil catastrophes was the Deepwater Horizon explosion that occurred in 2010. The explosion killed 11 workers and sent 4 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico.
National news coverage of the event led to serious worldwide concerns about oil rig safety. While the tragedy might have moved some oil and gas companies to take more substantial steps to improve safety, eliminating all dangers could prove impossible.
The Deepwater Horizon disaster eventually spawned the creation of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement. Reports suggest the agency might be somewhat derelict in its duties since it may not be reporting all the offshore oil and gas rig death accurately. If the figures are not accurate, the public might not fully understand how dangerous the jobs are.
Litigation and offshore deaths
An investigation may reveal the reasons why workers lost their lives in a workplace accident. If negligence contributed to an explosion or another disaster, a wrongful death lawsuit might follow. Surviving relatives may rely on a settlement or judgment for financial support. Injured workers could potentially do the same.
A workers’ compensation claim might be an avenue worth exploring. California’s workers’ comp rules follow a “no-fault” approach. That means negligence is not relevant to the claim, and death benefits could be available to the surviving family members of a decedent.