… Sharon Hill says she found out about her husband’s death three hours after it happened on Facebook and the next morning a Cyclone Drilling employee dropped off his truck.
She told us that Cyclone ruled his death an accidental and cause of death on his death certificate will say extreme trauma to the head.
Shane Hill had worked on oil rigs for more than ten years and according to Sharon, he started working at cyclone in October of last year.
“He was the best person I’ve ever met in my life he did everything for me and my children, he worked hard every day to support us,” says Sharon Hill …
Shane Hill, 34, of Grand Junction was killed on Tuesday (10/21) in an incident at a well pad operated by WPX Energy up the Parachute Creek Valley. Hill was an employee with Cyclone Drilling.
In a statement to the Daily Sentinel, WPX spokesperson Susan Alvillar said Hill’s death occurred about 7:00 p.m., adding, “Tuesday was a very sad day for us and our hearts go out to the family.”
According to Deputy Coroner Thomas Walton, Hill died instantly when a fitting blew and struck him in the head.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is on site investigating the worker fatality.
The incident was also reported to the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission and the Bureau of Land Management.
According to an article in the Saturday (10/25) edition of the Daily Sentinel, Cyclone Drilling has been fined several times for safety violations:
In April the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 529 people died nationally while working in oil and gas extraction from 2007-11, including 19 in Colorado.
Contact with objects and equipment accounted for 26 of the 112 fatalities that occurred nationwide in 2011, “with the majority of these resulting from being struck by object or equipment,” the bureau said in a fact sheet.
In 2012, OSHA cited Cyclone Drilling with two repeat and five serious safety and health standard violations in North Dakota, pointing to fall, electrical and fire hazards. One of the repeat violations arose because of a previous violation relating to an eye wash station in the Meeker area in 2010.
OSHA proposed $65,600 in penalties but under a settlement Cyclone paid $27,400 and several of the citations were dropped.
Cyclone was fined $7,000 for safety violations related to a well fire that burned a rig drilling a Williams well in 2008 east of Parachute. No one was injured in that incident.
It also was fined $2,720 for a 2012 violation near Meeker, more than $8,000 for violations outside Rifle in 2011, $2,040 for a 2011 Meeker-area violation, and $5,355 for 2010 violations outside Meeker, according to OSHA records.