The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Wynnewood Refining Co. LLC with repeat, serious and other-than-serious violations after the death of two workers at the firm’s crude oil refinery in Wynnewood, Oklahoma. The OSHA investigation began at the oil refinery on September 29, 2012, following a boiler explosion, which killed the two Oklahoma workers. During the investigation, federal investigators found violations of the company’s process safety management standard, which requires specific management of workplace hazards associated with processes involving dangerous chemicals. If you have been injured in an oil refinery accident or another serious job site accident in Oklahoma, consult our reputable lawyers at Oklahoma Legal Center today to discuss your legal options.
Consequences of Violating OSHA Standards
The six repeat violations were cited for the company’s failure to ensure that boiler equipment complied with recognized and accepted good engineering practices; failure to provide training at least every three years on the practice of igniting boiler burners; and other OSHA violations. A repeat violation occurs when an employer has been previously cited for the same or a similar violation of a standard, rule, regulation or order at any other facility in federal enforcement states within the last five years. The oil refinery was cited for similar violations in 2008. Serious violations occur when there is substantial probability that serious physical harm or death could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.
OSHA is responsible for establishing and enforcing workplace safety standards throughout the United States in an effort to reduce the risk of on-the-job accidents, injuries and fatalities. Unfortunately, when employers or supervisors fail to adhere to standard protocol regarding workplace safety – often in an attempt to save time or money – workers are the ones who usually pay the price. Far too often, in Oklahoma and across the country, the lives of workers in the gas and oil industry and other dangerous industries are put at unnecessary risk by employers who fail to put the safety of their employees first.
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“Failure to implement effectively OSHA’s process safety management regulations, which protects employees from potential hazards at high-risk facilities, such as petrochemical refineries, will not be tolerated,” said OSHA’s area director in Oklahoma City, David Bates. “If OSHA’s standards had been followed, it is possible this tragedy could have been avoided.” If you have suffered injuries in a workplace accident in Oklahoma, or if you lost a loved one in a fatal job site accident, contact our knowledgeable workers’ compensation attorneys at Oklahoma Legal Center for legal help. You may be entitled to financial compensation for current and future medical bills, temporary or permanent disability, or death benefits in the event of a fatal on-the-job injury, and our lawyers can help you recover the benefits you are entitled to.