As expected, there have been a number of questions raised about workplace safety in Texas in the wake of the West fertilizer plant explosion. Fifteen people were killed in the fertilizer plant explosion, and hundreds more injured.
A number of public safety organizations have begun raising questions about workplace safety in Texas. According to Texas Watch, the state of Texas needs to conduct its own state-based inspections of workplaces like the fertilizer plant which exploded, and not merely rely on federal investigations to do the job.
According to records, there has been no inspection of the plant at least in the past 5 years. Data from the Texas Commission on Environment and Quality and Environmental Protection Agency shows that the last visit to the West Fertilizer Company was back in 2007. That visit was the result of a complaint about an older coming from the plant.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has not made a visit to the Texas fertilizer plant at least since 1985.It is no secret that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is simply not able to perform the number of inspections that it needs to conduct to ensure that workplace safety regulations are being complied with, because of staffing shortages. This has only worsened the safety situation in Texas. In fact, the state in a bid to woo investments from other competitors like California has promoted its “loose rules” culture and business-friendly climate in order to lure businesses.
Unfortunately, as these workplace accidents show, that increased investment is coming at the cost of worker safety.
The Texas refinery explosion lawyers at Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P., Accident & Injury Lawyers represent workers injured in refinery explosions across Texas.