Texas Oil Field Injury Attorney Explains Liability for Accidents

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Raymond Hatcher | 888-364-6814 | Free Consult

Who is liable for oil field injuries when workers are injured in onsite accidents?

Raymond Hatcher is a Texas oil field injury attorney with Sloan Law Firm, which is based in Longview, Texas, and has offices in Houston and Santa Fe. He devotes his practice exclusively to litigation, and his areas of practice include truck accidents, car accidents, commercial litigation, toxic torts, ERISA claims, and workplace injury cases. In this Quick Question, he explains which parties are liable for an oil field injury.

To learn more, contact the attorney directly by calling 888-364-6814 or by submitting a contact form on this page. The consultation is free and confidential, and you owe no out-of-pocket attorney fees.

Everyone on location in an oil field operation is beholden to the operator.

The operator is essentially responsible for running the entire oil field. However, the operator is rarely physically on location themself, nor are their immediate employees. For this reason, the operator often hires people to keep an eye on the running of the operation on location; this person is known as a well superintendent, sometimes called a company man.

The oil and gas industry is very tight-knit, with few conflicts of interest involved in the process. The primary goal of the majority of parties involved in an oil field operation both on and off location is making money. However, like with any industry where profit is the motivating factor, there can be a tendency to overlook basic safety measures in favor of saving money and increasing profit. The operator’s job is to ensure that the oil field runs smoothly, avoiding any significant safety hazards or accidents from occurring. Unfortunately, without being present themself, and even with a well superintendent or company man in place, basic safety measures are often overlooked to the detriment of oil field workers.

Companies that work for the operator must sign a Master Service Agreement regarding following safety regulations, but this is often ignored.

The Master Service Agreement is an agreement between the operator and any company hired by the operator in the course of drilling the well; this agreement states that the hired parties will fully comply with and enforce the operator’s safety rules and regulations. Unfortunately, this is rarely the case. Hatcher maintains that safety rules and regulations on location are almost virtually ignored.

This is why it’s a good idea to involve a lawyer if you or a loved one were injured in an oil field accident; liability can be hard to establish and prove with so many parties involved. An experienced oil field attorney will be familiar with oil field safety regulations and the parties responsible for enforcing them. Like most personal injury attorneys, the majority of reputable oil field accident attorneys work on contingency, which means you don’t pay unless they win. If you are unsure of how to report safety hazards on the job, seek legal counsel to learn what your rights are, including protection from employer retaliation.

To learn more, contact Raymond Hatcher directly by calling 888-364-6814 or by submitting a contact form on this page. The consultation is free and confidential, and you owe no out-of-pocket attorney fees.

Video Transcript:

Rob Rosenthal:

Do you know who to hold responsible if you’re injured in an oil field? In this AskTheLawyers Quick Question, we ask Texas attorney Raymond Hatcher.

Raymond Hatcher:

Well, the oil and gas industry is unique in that it’s a very close-knit industry, and that everyone that’s on a location essentially has the same interest and that’s making money, but they’re all beholden to the operator. So the operators, the oil company that’s running the location. Interestingly, though, the operator is never physically on the location nor are their employees on the location. They hire someone called well superintendent or sometimes they’re known as a company man who is the operator’s eyes and ears on location. All these companies that are working for the operator in the course of drilling this well, every one of those companies has got a what’s called a Master Service Agreement with the operator that requires those people to comply with the operator’s rules and regulations. Unfortunately the safety rules and regulations are almost virtually ignored.

Disclaimer: This video is for informational purposes only. In some states, this video may be deemed Attorney Advertising. The choice of lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely on advertisements.