Hydraulic fracturing is a type of drilling for natural gas or oil by injecting millions of gallons of fluid at high pressure into an underground rock layer, releasing fuel into areas where it can be more easily extracted. Fracking is an inherently dangerous practice. Gas tank explosions, chemical burns, truck and vehicle accidents, machinery accidents, and environmental effects of chemicals released into nearby water and air can cause severe injuries and illness to workers at the site and those who live nearby.
If you suffered harm or your loved one was killed due to hydraulic fracturing, a Johnstown civil attorney could determine if you are entitled to compensation. An experienced Johnstown fracking accident lawyer could explain your rights, assess your personal injury or workers’ compensation claim, and fight to ensure you receive full compensation for your injuries or illness.
What are the Dangers of Fracking?
The Marcellus Shale oil and natural gas formation is one of the largest sources of natural gas in the United States and sits under Pennsylvania, beneath towns near Johnstown. One issue with fracking is that it uses pressurized fluid to break the layers of rock. Though the fluid is water, many companies add chemicals to the water that are carcinogenic or cause pollution. These chemicals can get into the ground around the fracking site contaminating the water that is relied upon by nearby communities.
Another problem associated with fracking is the release of methane and other pollutants from underground gas fields into the groundwater and air. Though rare, sometimes there can also be a risk of a gas explosion from the gas released into the air.
Illnesses and Injuries Related to Hydraulic Fracturing
Cancer is one of the most harmful effects of hydraulic fracturing due to the chemicals used in fracking wells. Other health problems that fracking may cause to individuals include:
- Pregnancy and birth injuries
- Asthma or other respiratory problems
- Vision loss
- Psychological issues
- Skin disorders
Injuries to Workers in the Fracking Industry
Workers in the fracking industry are prone to serious injuries. Fire and explosions can result in dealing with oil and gas. In addition, accidents occur from the heavy equipment and machinery needed to extract the substances through fracking. Workers can sustain injuries such as broken bones, crushed limbs, burns, electrocution, exposure to toxic chemicals, brain and spine injuries from truck accidents, and death.
Accidents can occur from the negligence of workers, the employer, or a third party. An experienced Johnstown fracking accident attorney may be able to investigate all responsible parties to ensure the total amount of compensation is awarded and those who are negligible are held accountable.
Statute of Limitations in Johnstown
The statute of limitations for a personal injury claim in Johnstown is two years from the date of the injury, according to 42 P.S. §5524. Injury or illness from fracking accidents will typically fall within this two-year limitation. Failure to file within this time limitation may bar a potential plaintiff from filing the case, losing his or her right to be awarded compensation.
Certain circumstances can extend this two-year filing deadline. Other filing deadlines may apply, such as when the suit involves the negligence of a government agency, in which case a particular form of written notice is required within six months of the incident. A skilled fracking accident attorney knowledgeable in the statute of limitations in Johnstown may ensure filing within the applicable time limit and could assess if one’s case falls within an exception to the two-year deadline.
Contact a Johnstown Fracking Accident Attorney Today for a Consultation
Accidents involving hydraulic fracturing can cause severe injuries and illnesses, resulting in lifelong complications. A qualified Johnstown fracking accident lawyer could assess your case and ensure you receive maximum damages for the harm to you and your family. Call the office of Marcus & Mack today.