Explosion at ExxonMobil site hurts three

ExxonMobil Hq, Tx13 August 2013 – Investigations are continuing into an explosion that injured three people at an ExxonMobil-operated oilfield in North Texas over the weekend.

The explosion occurred in Gregg County, east of Dallas, at around 12:50pm on Saturday, according to local reports.

Details were unclear, but the Tyler Morning Telegraph quoted local law enforcement officials as saying the explosion was triggered when workers were welding a pipe that was thought to be clear of hydrocarbons.

Kenneth Shahan, 54, Brent Ellison, 26, and 25-year-old Antonio Exner were injured in the blast, according to the newspaper.

Each of the men were contracted by Texas-based supermajor ExxonMobil, a spokesman at the Gregg County Sheriff’s Department said, without providing further details.

The employer of the victims was not known.

Ellison was taken to a hospital in Dallas with third-degree burns and blast injuries; Shahan was admitted with second-degree burns and blast injuries.

Exner was treated and released at a local hospital, according to the report.

No update was available on the conditions of the victims.

The Gregg County Fire Department and the Operational Safety & Health Administration are investigating.

Separately, in Kentucky last week, a 20-year-old rig worker was injured in Magoffin County when his clothing got caught up in the rig and reportedly pulled him into it.

The rig operator saw what happened and “quickly shut down the rig with seconds to spare”, the Associated press quoted Magoffin County Rescue Squad Captain Carter Conley as saying.

The victim, identified as Tyler Lemaster, reportedly had several broken bones and other injuries and was treated at a hospital in West Virginia.

Lemaster was employed by Rhino Oil Field Services. The operator of the well site was unknown.

The rig has reportedly been shut down.
*Luke Johnson, Upstreamonline

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