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Lawsuits Filed in Memphis Oil Refinery Explosion Could Reach Millions

A wrongful death and injury lawsuit has been filed as a result of the Valero Refinery explosion in which a subcontractor was killed and two others were severely burned. On March 6, the men were told to block off a flare line located on a two-story platform. When they removed the bolts from the flare flange a large flash fire erupted. The intensity of the fire knocked two of the men 50 feet. Another worker was knocked off of the flare platform; he was still on fire when he hit the ground. The cause of the explosion has not yet been determined.

The lawsuit alleges severe and gross negligence – failure to ensure there were no hazardous or flammable gases in the flare line and failure to provide timely firefighting assistance. The suit contends that the valve leading the flare assembly was leaking and allowing hydrocarbons to build up in the work area, and that it took more than ten minutes before the burn victims received help. The lawsuit also claims that the fire was the third at the refinery in less than two years. In a recent hearing, a judge denied the plaintiff’s motion to shut down the refinery so the valve could be removed and tested.

Sadly accidents and tragedies like this cause serious and life-threatening injuries and rob us of our loved ones. In addition to the emotional and physical pain, these families may suffer financially. In cases such as this, where the plaintiff appears to have a strong case, filing a lawsuit and waiting out the litigation process can take years. For those struggling financially to pay medical expenses, funeral expenses, and other bills, this time can be more difficult. A financially strapped plaintiff may even consider accepting a low settlement offer. Financial issues can largely be eliminated with lawsuit funding.

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