Three people are dead after a battery tank exploded at a power plant at the Caza Petroleum Lease Corporation in Carlsbad, New Mexico, according to the Eddy County Sheriff’s office. According to the ESCO spokesperson, the deceased were employees of the Caza Petroleum Lease Corporation. Deputies arrived at the scene around 11 a.m., where they found a battery tank on fire. The company used the battery tanks to measure and test the oil before it is pumped through pipelines. Fire officials also arrived at the scene, and after about three hours the fire was finally put out. (http://www.kob.com/new-mexico-news/3-dead-after-battery-tank-explosion-near-carlsbad/4593158/ )
New Mexico Workers Compensation
According to the United States Department of Labor, this year alone the Albuquerque Operating Office has spent a combined total of $16,197,613 on medical bills and compensation between 157 workers. (https://www.dol.gov/owcp/energy/regs/compliance/statistics/WebPages/ALBUQUERQUE_OPS.htm )
New Mexico has several workers compensation laws and benefits that protect the rights of the employee. If someone is injured or killed on the job, it is possible that they or their families can be entitled to receive workers’ compensation depending on the location. In New Mexico, employees are eligible for compensation for their basic wages for all injuries that occurred on the job. Employees are eligible to receive compensation immediately, without filing a suit. Common workplace injuries covered in New Mexico include strokes, bone fractures, carpal tunnel syndrome, and concussions. However, to receive compensation for work-related injuries or illnesses employees must be in their normal course and state during the time of employment. Workers will be denied compensation if they are caught trying to injure themselves intentionally or if they are intoxicated on the job. Furthermore, full compensation can be reduced if employees were not using safety precautions at the time of injury.
When an employee dies on the job, the deceased’s benefits are given to their dependents and remaining family members. That includes the deceased’s parents, children, spouses, and immediate family members.
Workers Compensation Nationwide
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, a nation-wide total of 4,836 fatal work injuries in 2015. Transportation-related fatal injuries increased to 1,264 accidents in 2015 compared to previous years. Slip falls, and trips caused 648 of fatal accidents that same year. There were 745 fatal injuries in 2015 among heavy and tractor-trailer drivers. There is a trend in fatalities among age groups as well. Employees aged 45 years and older made up about 58 percent of workplace fatalities.
There are several types of workers compensation available for New Mexican employees, including medical, permanent partial disability benefits, vocational rehabilitation benefits, temporary total benefits, permanent total benefits, and death benefits. Medical benefits are one of the most common types of compensation, disbursed for all necessary medical fees, including prescription medication, medical supplies, laboratory services, nursing services, hospital bills, and doctors’ visits. Permanent Total benefits are dispensed when employees are unable to return to employment after being injured on the job.