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Wed Mar 4, 2020, 07:36 AM

Deregulation Works! 2018 Offshore Oil/Gas Worker Injuries Up 21%, More Deaths In 2019 Than 2014-18

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The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement the federal agency tasked with regulating offshore drilling has not yet released a tally of offshore incident statistics for 2019. But the Center for American Progress dug through the agency's budget documents to find the number of injuries per hour worked on oil and gas facilities on the federal Outer Continental Shelf.

American Progress found that the rate of injuries increased 21% in 2018 and 2019 compared with the previous two-year period of 2016 and 2017. The data includes injuries that require medical treatment beyond first aid. It excludes those stemming from natural causes, illness or that are self-inflicted, according to the budget documents.

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The rate of offshore injuries was trending downward between 2015 and 2017. But there was a sharp uptick in accidents in 2018. The injury rate is calculated based on the number of injuries per 200,000 hours worked, which includes operator and contractor hours worked for production, construction and drilling operations on the Outer Continental Shelf, an area that includes the Gulf of Mexico.

While there were fewer accidents in 2019 than in 2018, the incidents in 2019 may have been more serious. In February, the BSEE reported that there was one fatality in 2018. While the agency has not released the number of fatalities in 2019, local media reports indicate there were at least nine offshore oil worker deaths, according to an analysis by The Times-Picayune. That would mean at least 8% of the injuries reported in 2019 were fatalities.

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https://www.nola.com/news/environment/article_6b7a4606-5cb2-11ea-afc6-33cfe07c1ae8.html

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