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No One Knows What Caused the Oilfield Explosion that Closed Highway 39


Continental Resources was conducting a fracking operation on January 13 when something went horribly wrong. Roaring flames and thick black smoke erupted after a loud explosion; several smaller booms were heard in nearby Tabler, just outside of Chickasha. The Grady County Fire Department raced to the site to help battle the conflagration.

Smart decisions save lives

Thanks to the efforts of first responders and a comprehensive emergency plan, none of the 60-man crew was injured. Grady County Fire Chief Buddy Meyers told News Channel 4, “When the fire first started, they attempted to control it with their fire extinguishers. When they realized that wasn’t possible, they initiated their emergency action plan, and everybody evacuated safely,”

The survival of the crew was truly miraculous, especially considering the circumstances. The chemicals used for fracking and extraction pose a significant risk; some react badly (read, explosively) to water, others react badly to fire. Figuring out which is which and where they are is a challenge; responding appropriately and quickly is another matter entirely.

The fire department established an evacuation distance of a half a mile, and worked diligently to control the blaze. Thanks to their efforts, 60 workers and their families avoided catastrophe. Nearly $50 million worth of equipment was destroyed in the explosion and resulting fire. Destruction on such a large scale is often fatal; we are grateful that no one was injured or killed in the explosion.

We are here for you when you need us most

Oil and gas extraction is dangerous, and workers are often injured or killed when complex operations go awry. At Stipe Law Firm, we have great admiration for those who work in this demanding and unforgiving industry. Unfortunately, oil field accidents occur all too often. When they do, our legal team advocates for your rights when an accident involves you or a loved one.

The Oklahoma oil field injury lawyers at Stipe Law Firm can help you file a wrongful death suit if your family member was killed while working in the oil fields, or help you navigate the claims process if you or a loved one sustained an injury. Contact us today for a free consultation at our McAlester office.