The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Wichita office has opened an investigation into the report of an oil field worker’s death. Travis Underwood, 30 of Great Bend, was an employee of Klima Well Service Inc., an oil field pumping unit service, who was performing oil field re-work at an existing oil well site north of Great Bend.
Initial reports indicated the Underwood was a member of a three-employee crew which was moving tubing and pipe at the oil well site when he was found unresponsive on a hot day, OSHA reported Friday. The incident occurred around 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.
“Our condolences are with the worker’s family and friends who have suffered an irreplaceable loss”, said Judy Freeman, OSHA’s area director in Wichita. “These incidents are preventable regardless of how long an employee works for a company.”
Heat illness can be deadly, an OSHA news release said. Every year, thousands of workers become sick from exposure to heat, and some even die. Heat illnesses and deaths are preventable. Employers are responsible for providing workplaces that are safe from excessive heat.
The OSHA Web page also has guidance related to addressing heat illness at osha.gov/SLTC/heatillness/index.html. For information on the OSHA inspection process seeosha.gov/OshDoc/data_General_Facts/factsheet-inspections.pdf.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, orreportworkplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA’s toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742), or the agency’s Wichita Area Office at 316-269-6644.