Types of Plant Explosion Injuries
Industrial plants are still a robust provider of jobs today. Over 100 people work daily in the average plant, and depending on the industry and facility size this number can be much larger. Due to the nature of plant work and the average number of daily workers, it is especially important that safety precautions are followed on a daily basis.
When employers or workers do not practice safety in a plant or refinery setting, explosions can happen, and plant explosion injuries in Houston can be seriously traumatic. Below, we identify the common injuries that may occur as a result of an explosion.
The most common plant explosion injury is a burn. An explosion usually involves a flame or fire where the temperatures can exceed thousands of degrees. Severe second and third-degree burns can result from flame exposure and can be extremely painful. Chemicals involved in explosions can also cause burns, and a combination of heat and chemicals can be detrimental.
This is a hazard especially in refineries, such a chemical plants and natural gas refineries, where combustion devices are used. Burns can leave scarring and cause both physical and mental trauma, which can put an employee out of work temporarily or even permanently. It is important to consult a refinery burn lawyer in Texas in these situations to pursue compensation.
The force of an explosion can cause materials and objects to shatter, as well as debris to fall. Debris can easily cause lacerations on the body, such as:
- Open wounds
Sometimes these injuries may be minor, but often it is not possible to know how severe a laceration is until it is examined by a medical professional.
Any time bones, muscles, ligaments, and joints are damaged, it is considered an orthopedic injury. Common orthopedic injuries resulting from explosions in plants include:
- Bone fractures
- Sprains and strains
- Broken bones
- Torn muscles
- Damaged vertebrae
Depending on the severity of the injury, an employee may not be able to work or even walk for weeks or months or may be permanently disabled.
The force behind an explosion makes an extremely loud noise, and being nearby puts a person at risk of acoustic injuries. Suffering one or both ruptured eardrums after an explosion is a common issue. Not only is a ruptured eardrum painful, but it can also cause permanent issues with hearing, vertigo, and/or dizziness.
After the initial explosion, a steady fire usually starts. Plumes of smoke can fill the facility, and those who are able to safely escape can still suffer from inhaling smoke in the process. Immediate issues caused by smoke inhalation are coughing and shortness of breath, but exposure can cause damage to the airways.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Not all injuries are physical. It is normal for an employee involved in a plant explosion to have post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. Any significantly traumatic experience can trigger PTSD. Symptoms of this disorder include:
- Behavioral changes such as irritability, hostility, and isolation
- Emotional detachment
PTSD is different for everyone, and not everyone will have the symptoms above. Regardless of symptoms, it is a serious concern and requires treatment and evaluation just like any physical injury.
Get Help From a Plant Explosion Injuries Lawyer in Texas
If you suffer plant explosion injuries including refinery burns, schedule a free consultation with a Houston plant accident attorney at Richard J. Plezia & Associates. With years of experience in personal injury claims, we have the knowledge and diligence needed to get compensation for your suffering. Call 1-800-428-1853 to schedule a free consultation today.