Skip to Main Content

States Sue Trump’s EPA For Delaying New Chemical Disaster Rule Meant to Curb Refinery & Plant Explosions

Louisiana Plant Explosion Lawyer - Best Plant Explosion Lawyer Louisiana - Phillips 66 Pipeline Explosion Lawyer

Eleven State Attorneys General have filed suit against the Trump Administration, in a bid to force the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to implement regulations aimed at reducing the risk of deadly plant and refinery explosions.

New Chemical Disaster Rule Delayed Until February 2019

The new Chemical Disaster Rule was finalized in December by the outgoing Obama Administration, and was intended to improve the prevention, detection, and response to plant explosions and chemical accidents. The new rules were formulated in reaction to the 2013 West, Texas fertilizer plant explosion that killed 15 people, injured 160, and destroyed dozens of buildings in the Central Texas community, including a nursing home and three of the town’s four schools.

The new regulations were scheduled to take effect in March 2017, and would have impacted more than 1,200 facilities throughout the United States, including chemical plants, paper mills, and refineries, among others. However, industry groups have successfully petitioned EPA secretary Scott Pruitt to delay their enactment until February 2019.

Plant Explosions Continue to Kill and Injure Workers

Nearly three years after the West, Texas catastrophe, preventable plant and refinery explosions continue to kill and injure workers throughout the United States.  Louisiana alone has seen three serious incidents in the past nine months, including a deadly explosion at the Packaging Corporation of America (PCA) facility in DeRidder on February 8th that took the lives of three workers and injured seven. The following day, a pipeline explosion and fire at the Phillips 66 Station in Paradis, Louisiana killed one worker and severely injured two others.

Our Plant Explosion Lawyers  recently filed a lawsuit in Harris County District Court on behalf of two workers who were severely injured during the Phillips 66 explosion in Paradise.

Click here to read Ryan Zehl’s interview with the Houma Times regarding the Paradis explosion.

11 States Claim Chemical Disaster Rule Delay Illegal

On July 24th, Attorneys General from 11 states, including New York, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington, filed suit in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, challenging what they claim is the illegal delay of the new Chemical Disaster Rule.

“Protecting our workers, first-responders, and communities from chemical accidents should be something on which we all agree,” New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said in a statement issued by his office. “Yet the Trump EPA continues to put special interests before the health and safety of the people they serve.”

Among other things, the states’ lawsuit cites the 2013 Williams Olefins plant explosion in Geismar, Louisiana as proof that the stricter safety rules are needed. That blast killed two workers and injured 167 others.

Our Louisiana Explosion Lawyers recently obtained highly-favorable and confidential settlements on behalf of more than 60 workers injured in the Williams Geismar explosion.

Trump Administration Targets Chemical Safety Board, Acts to Rollback Worker Safeguards

The delay of the new Chemical Disaster Rule is just one facet of the Trump Administration’s efforts to dismantle the regulatory framework intended to keep workers and the public safe from industrial disasters, including refinery, pipeline, and plant explosions.

Among other things, the Administration has proposed eliminating the U.S. Chemical Safety Board, which is charged with investigating major chemical disasters.

Though it has no authority to issue regulations, the Chemical Safety Board has earned a stellar reputation for its work, which it performs on an annual budget of less than $12 million. Even the industry acknowledges the Board’s value and is opposed to its elimination.

“The safety board is an honest broker at identifying problems, and industry appreciates having that,” Glenn Ruskin, communications director for the American Chemical Society, recently told

Since January, the  Trump Administration has enacted numerous other regulatory rollbacks that will endanger the lives of workers at pipelines, plants, and refineries throughout the country.

Undefeated Plant Explosion Lawyers Win More than $1 Billion For Injured Workers Across the Country

Our Undefeated Plant Explosion Lawyers have won record-setting verdicts and settlements on behalf of injured workers throughout Texas, Louisiana, and the United States.

In just the past five years alone, we’ve recovered more than $1 billion representing the victims of every major industrial explosion in recent memory, including:

  • BP Deepwater Horizon Offshore Oil Rig Explosion
  • BP Texas City Explosion
  • Williams Geismar Explosion
  • Williams Gibson Explosion
  • Imperial Sugar Explosion
  • International Paper Explosion

Our consultations are always free, and since we only represent clients on a contingency basis, you’ll never pay any legal fees unless we win your case.

If you or someone you love was severely injured in a pipeline, refinery, or plant explosion, please contact our Undefeated Explosion Lawyers for a Free, No-Obligation Consultation at 1-888-603-3636 or by Clicking Here.