Could the decline in oil prices lead to a work injury incline in the Bakken oil field?

If you are an electrician, welder, or a construction worker of any type, chances are you've been offered or sought employment in the Montana/North Dakota regions. It's no surprise considering the source rock of oil known as the, BakkenFormation, is located there. According to Wikipedia, the Bakken formation "occupies about 200,000 square miles." That is a powerhouse of opportunity and possibility for anyone in the oil industry. However, with opportunities and possibilities this great comes an even greater need for responsibility and safety that in many circumstances, isn't always met.

In fact, Midwest Energy News noted that,"40 people working in the oil and gas fields in western North Dakota have died as a result of workplace injuries since 2011," with another 9,000 work injury claims filed with North Dakota's Workforce Safety and Insurance Agency between the years of 2009 and 2013. With the decline in oil prices forcing many shale oil producers to drastically cut their budgets, 2015 is shaping up to be a treacherous year indeed.

CBC News reported that Continental Resources has cut their 2015 Bakken oil field budget by a staggering $2.5 billion. In addition, they have also reduced their number of operating oil rigs from 50 to 34. Considering that Continental is one of the largest producers in the Bakken area, it's no surprise that many other Bakken oil field producers have followed suite. What is surprising however, is that according to the same article, Continental is still predicting their average production for 2015, "to be 16-20 percent higher than its average for 2014," despite the drastic reduction of funds and operating oil rigs. That begs one very simple question... how?

Let us all hope that whatever short cuts and sacrifices are being made this year in the Bakken oil field, none of them are in the safety department. Alas, accidents do happen and working in the Bakken oil field is no doubt risky business, regardless of your position. If you are or will be seeking opportunities in Montana or North Dakota and find yourself in need of assistance due to a work injury the team at Odegaard Braukmann Law would be delighted to assist you. Please contact usfor further information on how we can ensure that you are properly taken care of.

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