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Workplace accident in oilfield claims life of 19-year-old

Workers in the oil fields that are involved in hydraulic fracturing face many hazards at their places of work -- regardless of whether they are in the North Dakota Bakken or similar regions in other states. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating a workplace accident that occurred in another state on a recent Thursday. The agency intends to determine whether this incident resulted from a safety violation.

Few details about the accident are available, except that the rear end of a tractor-trailer crushed the worker. Investigators will determine the circumstances that led to the incident. Reportedly, a medical rescue helicopter rushed the critically injured worker from the site of the well pad to a hospital. Sadly, the 19-year-old worker succumbed to his injuries later.

Reportedly, this company advised authorities of the employee's death within the prescribed 48 hours. However, it is not clear whether the employer complied with all the safety regulations that OSHA prescribes for this industry. Although the death of any employee in the oil fields is tragic, the death of a 19-year-old seems even more so.

Following this workplace accident, the surviving family members of this oilfield worker will likely have to face financial challenges when dealing with end-of-life arrangements and medical expenses related to attempts to save his life. When such tragedies occur in North Dakota, the workers' compensation insurance system provides death benefits that the family members may pursue. Along with coverage of the mentioned financial losses, a wage-replacement package may also be awarded for a specified period after the loved one's death.

Source: theintelligencer.net, "Well Pad Worker Dies in Accident in Tyler County", Miles Layton, Jan. 13, 2017

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