Texas Mutual Workers' Compensation Insurance Company - Work Safe, Texas

Oil & Gas Industry
Hazards and Controls

En Español Worker in front of oil rig

When a geologist named Anthony Lucas discovered oil on a Southeast Texas hilltop more than a century ago, he had no idea he was witnessing the birth of the modern oil industry. Fast-forward to today, and oil remains a key component in our state’s economy. Thousands of hard-working Texans make their living in the oil patch. Unfortunately, their risk of dying on the job is seven times higher than workers in other industries.

Hazard: Motor Vehicle Accidents

Of all the hazards oil and gas workers face, the most dangerous is something they consider second-nature: driving. Motor vehicle fatalities in the oil patch are eight times higher than in other industries.

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Hazard: Burns

Flammable vapor and liquids, hazardous chemicals and hot work operations are common sources of burns in the oil industry.

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Hazard: Struck By, Caught-in-Between

Workers might be exposed to struck-by/caught-in/caught-between from moving vehicles or equipment, falling equipment and high-pressure lines.

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Hazard: Slips, Trips and Falls

Wet, oily, muddy and icy surfaces increase the risk of slips, trips and falls. Workers might also be required to access platforms and equipment located high above the ground.

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Hazard: Hydrogen Sulfide Gas

Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is a flammable, colorless gas that is toxic at extremely low concentrations. It is heavier than air, and may accumulate in low-lying areas. More commonly known as sour gas, H2S smells like “rotten eggs” at low concentrations and causes you to quickly lose your sense of smell.

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OSHA recently issued a new silica standard that reduces the permissible exposure limit and requires employers to put control measures in place. For more information, visit our Work Safe, Texas blog.