A 28-year-old man is dead following a workplace accident at an Ohio oil well, which left another worker with head injuries. Authorities say the accident occurred after the two oil rig workers failed to properly secure a safety line. It is unclear whether the victim's family plans to take legal action against the Ohio energy firm that operates the well, nor has the surviving worker indicated whether he intends to seek workers' compensation benefits to cover wages he has potentially lost due to injuries sustained in the accident. The incident remains under investigation.
According to the 21-year-old survivor, the accident occurred when someone failed to secure a safety line when he and the victim were operating drilling equipment. This caused other equipment to swing around toward the workers. That equipment then reportedly slammed into the victim's back and seriously injured him. The survivor told police that he was largely able to avoid being struck.
Emergency response personnel responded to the accident site at about 4 p.m., administering CPR when they noticed the victim was not breathing. They continued to treat the man until he could be transported to a nearby medical care facility, where he was pronounced dead approximately 90 minutes later. It is unclear whether the other worker required hospitalization.
The energy firm issued a statement on the morning after the fatal accident, extending its condolences to the family of the deceased worker. The company stressed that it "remains in communication with the authorities" and announced that it intends to assist police with their investigation of the accident.
Hundreds of people are killed or injured in similar workplace accidents every year. In many cases, such accidents leave victims unable to return to work for some time, often qualifying them for workers' compensation benefits. Ohio residents who believe they may be entitled to such benefits should contact an attorney.
Source: Times Reporter, "Victim in oil-rig tragedy identified," Nancy Scharr, Feb. 26, 2013