Two people are dead and several injured as a result of the Middletown power plant explosion, likely caused by a natural gas leak. The blast was so powerful that thousands of Middletown residents felt the explosion or heard the thunderous "boom". It is possible that casualties will rise as the investigation continues and the site is cleaned.
Unfortunately, industrial accidents are all too common, and many workers and innocent bystanders are injured or killed when they occur. Sometimes explosions are caused by human error, faulty machinery or infrastructure failures, but some appear to have to have no readily ascertained cause. Whatever the cause, people who are injured in industrial accidents and families of those who are killed may have recourse through workers' compensation benefits and by bringing civil lawsuits.
What Injuries and Damage Occurred?
In this case, a wide range of injuries were sustained by workers, including severe burns, broken bones, lacerations, back/neck trauma and internal damage. The affected workers might be able to seek workers' compensation benefits from and/or bring personal injury claims against the owner of the power plant, Kleen Energy Systems LLC.
The families of those who died in the Middletown power plant explosion might be eligible to bring civil claims for the wrongful death of their loved ones. Wrongful death lawsuits are not just about punitive damages, but are meant to help the family with the costs associated with a death, including lost future wages, funeral expenses, loss of companionship and medical bills.
Additionally, it appears that some of the homes in the area of the Middletown power plant explosion may have suffered structural damage because of the vibrations. Windows can be blown out by an explosion of that magnitude, walls may crack, joints can loosen and foundations could be compromised - home and business owners, or their insurance companies, could seek reimbursement of repair-related expenses.
What Can Be Done?
Clearly a lawsuit is not the first thing that comes to most people's minds when tragedy strikes, but medical expenses and other costs can add up quickly. Workers who have little or no health insurance are especially likely to find themselves in thousands of dollars of debt for medical treatment, and civil litigation is sometimes the only way for people to protect themselves in severe accidents like this one. If you or a loved one has been affected by an on-the-job accident, seeking the advice of a skilled personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible is an important step toward protecting your rights.