Reducing burn risks in the oil and gas industry with clothing

Burn injuries are a serious risk for Missouri employers who are working in the oil and gas industry. While most employers do everything they can to keep workers safe, fires can and do occur, often resulting in serious and even fatal injuries.

Burn injuries can be both costly for the employee and for the company. Workers, for example, could spend 54 or more days in the hospital if they suffer burn injuries on 4 to 50 percent of the body. In addition to having workers at risk for suffering life-changing or even fatal injuries if a fire occurs, employers could face fines from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, legal costs, hospital costs and a reduction in productivity.

While preventing fires and explosions should be a priority, flame-resistant clothing can help reduce the severity of burns injuries if a workplace accident does occur. Employers should choose clothing that meets OSHA regulations based on the particular hazard. For example, employers should choose clothing that are highly visible if a work environment has poor visibility. Clothing that protects workers in the event of a flash fire may also be needed. Clothing should be comfortable to work in as clothing that is too hot or does not provide enough ventilation may be worn incorrectly.

Major injuries that occur on the job, like burn injuries, can have a major impact on a worker's life. If the injuries are severe enough, an employee may be unable to work for months if not years and may require rehabilitation. A workers compensation attorney may help a severely injured employee or his or her families members file a claim for benefits against the employer. If the claim is denied or the offered settlement does not cover the damages, the attorney may file an appeal or further negotiate with the employer.

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