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Lunsford, Baskin & Priebe PLLC. Motto
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Black Smoke from Garyville, Louisiana Oil Refinery Reveals More than Just Burning Oil – Worker Safety Violations, Worker Death Uncovered


When your workplace is an oil refinery, the slight smell of smoke can likely raise the hair on the back of your neck. Intensify the smoke to an all-out thick black column billowing out of an oil refinery site, and you may have a situation where workers may be in serious jeopardy of losing life or limb. Such was the case back in late August in Garyville, when, on a Friday morning a plume of heavy black smoke poured out of the Marathon Oil Refinery site.

According to local reports, on the morning of August 25, a leak of a chemical called naptha ignited near a large storage tank on the site, causing a fire, and the thick, black smoke to erupt from the refinery. St. John the Baptist Parish authorities were forced to evacuate people within a 2-mile radius of Marathon Oil in case nearby tanks storing flammable materials were ignited by the fire.

Although it appears that no one was killed in the August 25 fire at Marathon Oil, the recent fire prompted authorities and the media to dig a little deeper. Reviewing the company’s track record with safety issues, a bleak picture of the safety measures implemented at the worksite becomes clearer. As it turns out, the worksite has experienced multiple fires in the last four years. In fact, firefighters have responded to a total of four fires at Marathon Oil, including the most recent one on August 25, since 2018. A number of workers have also been involved in workplace accidents at Marathon Oil. In a February, 2022, fire at Marathon Oil, four workers were injured; in an October, 2022, fire two workers were seriously injured; and in November, 2022, fire at the refinery, one worker was tragically killed. According to reports, Marathon Oil has been subject to a number of fines over the years for OSHA safety violations.

Help for Injured Oil Refinery Workers and Other Louisiana Workers

Although nothing can bring back a lost loved one who has died on the job, nor can anything truly make a person whole after they experience a terrible workplace accident, in Louisiana, most workers who are injured on the job are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. In addition, when a worker died on the job in Louisiana, certain dependent family members of the deceased worker may be able to collect workers’ compensation death benefits. In order to determine whether you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits or workers’ compensation death benefits in Louisiana, it is best to speak with an experienced Louisiana workers’ compensation lawyer.

The experienced Louisiana workers’ compensation lawyers at Lunsford Baskin & Priebe offer a free and confidential consultation to see if they can help injured Louisiana workers get workers’ compensation benefits due. Contact the experienced Louisiana workers’ compensation lawyers at Lunsford Baskin & Priebe today for a free and confidential consultation to see if they can help fight for you.


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