One Person Killed In Lemont Explosion At Seneca Petroleum Plant
Wrongful Death - April 26, 2023
One Person Died, One Injured In Chicago Area Explosion Accident At Seneca Petroleum in Lemont, Illinois
LEMONT, ILLINOIS (April 25, 2023) – One person died and another person was injured in an explosion and fire at Seneca Petroleum in Lemont, Illinois.
Cook County police officials are saying that the accident took place around 9:40 a.m. on Tuesday. There was a sudden explosion at the plant and firefighters were called.
It is not believed that there was any type of hazmat situation following the incident. There were many pieces of debris hanging on the railing on one of the tanks at the petroleum plant.
One person sustained minor injuries and was taken to the hospital. Tragically, one person at Seneca Petroleum died due to the severity of their injuries.
The Illinois Occupational Safety and Health Administration and officials from ComEd were called to the scene of the incident. A full investigation remains ongoing at this time.
Liability For Lemont Industrial Accidents
Despite continued improvements in workplace safety standards, far too many people are seriously injured in industrial accidents every year. According to the ELCOSH, “NIOSH’s National Traumatic Occupational Fatality (NTOF) database reported 220 deaths due to fire and 354 deaths due to explosion from 1980-1995 in construction, an average of 36 fire and explosion deaths per year.” There are a number of common causes of plant explosions.
- Boilers may not be properly cared for.
- Machinery at the plant may not have been properly maintained.
- Employers may not properly trained their employees.
When a worker is killed or injured in Illinois, they or their family may have legal recourse through a worker’s compensation claim. The worker’s compensation system is a no-fault liability scheme in Illinois. There is no need for an injured worker or their family to demonstrate liability in order to receive benefits. An injured worker may also have recourse through a third party liability claim. A third party liability claim may be possible when an entity separate from a worker’s employer contributed to an accident.
For example, a property owner could be liable for an explosion if a petroleum plant was in an unsafe condition. Pursuant to Illinois Civil Code 740 ILCS 130/2, all property owners in Illinois have a legal obligation to maintain their premises in a reasonably safe condition. If a property owner does not maintain their premises in a safe condition, this could form the basis of a negligence claim. There are many steps that should be taken after any petroleum plant explosion.
- Eye witnesses should be interviewed.
- Medical records should be preserved.
- Work records should be examined.
- OSHA should conduct a thorough investigation.
Companies are supposed to create a safe environment for their workers. But far too often, profit incentives push companies to make safety compromises. The family of any worker that is killed in a petroleum plant explosion may be able to seek some measure of justice through a wrongful death claim. Sadly, though, companies will often fight hard to deny liability for workplace accidents. This is why it is so important that all workplace incidents are properly investigated.
Investigating A Lemont Petroleum Plant Accident
We at Horwitz Horwitz & Associates extend our deepest condolences to the family of the person that died in this explosion at Seneca Petroleum. Any person that may have more information about what happened should reach out to OSHA. It is our sincere hope that steps are taken to prevent other tragedies like this.
Do you need more information about an accident at Seneca Petroleum? Our team of worker’s rights advocates are here for you. We care deeply that worker’s are aware of their rights and that those rights are being protected. Whether you just have legal questions or need a free, independent investigation into any incident we are here for you. You can reach out to us anytime at (312) 564-4256.