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Colorado natural gas burst inflicts workplace injury to 3, kills 1

During the height of more scrutinized processes in the gas and oil industries due to the issues of onshore energy and hydraulic fracturing, a recent Colorado accident at a natural gas well has sparked media attention. It was the first such fatal accident for the Encana Corporation in the basin, but it has already caused industry attention. Colorado officials are calling the recent incident an industrial accident which unfortunately resulted in the death of one person and workplace injury to three others.

According to reports, the natural gas well released a burst of natural gas at a high pressure level. Workers were reportedly beginning the process of production after a new line had been drilled when the burst erupted. Further details into the burst have not been released, though it has been reported that no additional facilities sustained damage.

Further investigation is being conducted to discover a more precise cause for the burst. The worker who was killed was a 60-year-old man who worked as a contractor for Encana, which operates the well. Two additional injured parties are also contractors, while one is an employee of Encana. The nature or extent of the injuries sustained was not disclosed.

Any kind of accident causing a workplace injury can be difficult for Colorado workers and their families to get through. Though the nature of the injuries sustained by these workers was not disclosed, it is likely that they may face time away from work, medical expenses, and a challenging road ahead. Colorado workers are protected from devastation caused by workplace injuries through workers' compensation benefits. The last thing on an injured worker's mind may be filing a claim, but thankfully help is available. Colorado workers may be able to seek the guidance of an advocate experienced in maximizing benefits to get injured workers and their families what they need to move forward.

Source: Chicago Tribune, "Natural gas well burst kills one, injures three in Colorado," Keith Coffman, Aug. 15, 2012

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