9 Workers Face a Near-Miss Situation as their Companies Fail to Implement Fire Safety Plans

Two recycling companies in Sabine Pass, Texas face proposed penalties totaling $212,566 from OSHA after their failure to follow requisite safety standards resulted in nine workers encountering a serious near-miss situation.

The nine workers had to be air-lifted after being trapped on a drilling platform almost 30 stories high as a fire broke out, as their employers failed to put fire safety plans into action. Welders from Carlos Arturo Guerrero LLC (CAG Professional Services) and employees of Houston-based PH Steel Inc. were cutting parts for metal scrap and making electrical repairs respectively on the main deck of the Pride Wisconsin drilling platform when the fire began. Soon thereafter, they found themselves unable to lower themselves to escape as the platform's generator wires burned down. As the situation worsened and first responders were incapable of reaching the workers, the U.S. Coast Guard carried out a rescue operation via helicopter. 

Investigations by OSHA into the February 25th, 2022, incident revealed that although Carlos Arturo Guerrero LLC had a written fire safety plan detailing evacuation procedures from tall jack-up platforms, they failed to use it. The company faces a sum of $140,055 in proposed penalties. 

The other company involved in the incident - PH Steel Inc., had no written fire safety plan. They stand to payout $72,511 in proposed penalties. For more details view the citation letters issued to PH Steel Inc. and Carlos Arturo Guerrero LLC.

“In an industry where workers face potentially serious and deadly hazards every day, employers must act quickly to safely evacuate workers and must ensure workers are trained on proper safety procedures,” said Mark Briggs, OSHA Area Director for Houston in regard to the situation (OSHA, 2022, August 23).

This incident brings to light the importance of fostering an effective safety culture within organizations, especially those where workers are regularly exposed to hazardous situations. Despite safety plans and procedures being in place, a lack of an active safety culture can result in companies being unable to implement effective contingency measures in emergency situations, as demonstrated by the above incident.

Safety is a team effort and should receive active participation from employees at every level within an organization. Workers also require regular training on safety and health hazards and related protection measures to ensure they are up-to-date on what needs to be done in case of an adverse situation and to ensure compliance with OSHA safety standards. Depending on your industry, workers could be exposed to several different types of hazards and will require training specific to each hazard type. Our blog, The 6 Categories of Workplace Hazards, details the major hazards employees must be aware of in different industries and recommends training programs for each hazard.

Start your employees on safety training today with our OSHA, DOT, and EPA-compliant training courses for the construction industry, general industry, handling and transportation of hazmat, and hazardous waste operations. Knowledge enhancement and awareness can help inculcate life-saving safety values into your business operations and create a safety culture within your company!

Learn more about about OSHA Regulations for the State of Texas.


  • OSHA. (2022, August 22). Citation and Notification of Penalty. Carlos Arturo Guerrero LLC. Website https://www.dol.gov/sites/dolgov/files/OPA/news%20releases/Carlos%20Arturo%20Guerrero-%20Citations%20%231580441.pdf
  • OSHA. (2022, August 22). Citation and Notification of Penalty. PH Steel Inc. Website https://www.dol.gov/sites/dolgov/files/OPA/news%20releases/PH%20Steel-%20Citations%20%231580460.pdf
  • OSHA. (2022, August 23). OSHA News Release - Region 6. Investigation finds 2 recycling companies failed to use fire safety plans to evacuate 9 workers as air rescue averts drilling platform tragedy. Website. https://www.osha.gov/news/newsreleases/region6/08232022
Published on: August 29, 2022