There is a set of specific risks that come with working in a refinery:
- Flammable and explosive substances;
- Falling materials or debris;
- Dangerous weather conditions;
- Equipment failure;
- Improper safety precautions employed by the company;
And these are only the elements that can cause immediate damage. Those working in a refinery can also be exposed to substances that can have lasting effects on their health. Respiratory issues caused by the low-air quality in a refinery, for instance, are common health problems. All these threats can result in injuries, leaving the workers to deal with a lengthy process of coping, recovering, and getting proper compensation for their injuries.
If you’ve been involved in such an incident, then you are most likely dreading the months to come. After all, it’s a bleak scenario most don’t want to think about until they are forced to:
- It affects your livelihood and your entire family;
- It can bring a long period of physical recovery;
- Medical bills and treatment can affect your finances;
- It can even force you to find a new job if the injuries are so severe that you are not cleared to work in the refinery again;
However, in the case of a refinery injury, it’s essential to gather yourself quickly, think of the next steps to take and make sure you minimize its effects as much as you can.
Take Immediate Care of Your Injuries
The first and most important step is to take care of yourself. Seek medical help right away, and inform your employer of your situation.
It’s possible to receive some medical care at the site of the accident, but you should also see a doctor of your choosing once your condition is stable. They can help assess your case and the severity of your injury, which will be useful when seeking compensation.
Seek Legal Counsel
If you’ve been the victim of a refinery accident, then it’s best to hire an attorney to represent your legal interests. Even if your employer offers insurance, a knowledgeable lawyer can help navigate your claims, avoid legal loopholes and get you fair compensation.
Trying to do this all by yourself would be a time-consuming and challenging process. After a refinery accident, your priority should be your health and well being, not trying to understand the complexity of compensation law, insurance policies, or other bureaucratic matters and problems that might arise along the way.
Hire an Experienced Lawyer
Your safest bet is to get the help of an attorney experienced in worker’s compensation cases, especially since this niche comes with a broad set of challenges. Do a bit of online research and look for law firms that have the right expertize to represent you. Some even offer free consultations, so you can set a meeting to discuss your case and see if you’re comfortable with them.
Don’t think that you can sit back and relax once you’ve hired a refinery accident lawyer. Ask to be kept in the loop and be updated regularly. Your attorney shouldn’t make any critical decision without you knowing.
Keep Detailed Accounts of the Events
While your lawyer’s job includes talking to witnesses and securing any documentation related to your accident, you could also take some precautions to speed this process.
For instance, you could create a list of witnesses and other incidents at the refinery. You could also collect all the medical bills you get for receiving treatment for the accident. Share everything with your attorney who will represent you in your worker’s compensation claim.
A Long Way to Go
The process of recovery and rehabilitation depends dramatically on the severity of your injury, though it’s unlikely you’ll be back to work very soon after an accident.
Employer negligence or not, having a professional handle your legal actions can improve your chances of winning a trial or receiving proper compensation. Your priority should always be focusing on your well being, not trying to figure out the legal system on your own.