April Explosion at Superior Refinery Allegedly Caused by Safety Violations

St. Paul explosion injured two, demolished house

Safety violations allegedly caused the April explosion at Superior Refinery that injured 11 people, according to a federal investigation. The incident happened on April 26, 2018.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) cited the refinery for 13 safety violations. OSHA spokesman Mark Hysell said, “Ensuring the mechanical integrity of critical equipment used during the refinery shutdown operation could have prevented this incident” if the mechanical integrity of critical equipment had been ensured. 

OSHA’s charges include: The company failed inspections and testing. Its safety procedures were outdated. It failed to address “critical hazards.” And it did not properly train workers on shutdown procedures.

The explosion injured eleven workers and caused 25 others to seek medical help. And an evacuation of most of the city of Superior, Wisconsin was ordered.

Was There Breach of Duty in April Explosion at Superior Refinery?

“Breach of Duty” is a term used in injury law. It means that someone failed to meet their legal responsibility to another person. 

In the case of the April Explosion at Superior Refinery, a company has a responsibility to provide a safe working environment for its employees. If the company does not take the required measures to keep the workplace safe, it has breached its duty to its employees. Therefore, it may be liable for negligence.

In a negligence lawsuit, the court asks questions like:

  • Did the company fail to use reasonable care?
  • Was the building or machinery not kept in good repair?
  • Did the company hire unqualified people to perform some services?
  • Were employees properly trained?
  • Was a product defective?
  • Was the accident caused by poor workmanship?
  • Were alternatives available that may have prevented the accident?
  • Did the defendant use reasonable care that an average person would have used?
  • Was there an unreasonable burden in using safer alternatives?

All of these questions are considered to determine if a breach of duty has occurred. If it has, the people who were injured may be entitled to compensation. This should include compensation for future problems, including medical expenses, and pain and suffering.

The Pritzker Hageman law firm helps injured people throughout the country seek answers, justice, and compensation.  We have years of experience litigating explosion and burn cases, and have won millions for our clients.

If you have been injured in an explosion or fire, contact our compassionate attorneys to talk about your case. Our discussion with you is confidential, and there is no fee or obligation.

Call us at 1-888-377-8900, or send in the online response card. We will help you put your life back together so you can move forward from your injury.


McKinney, Matt, Mike Hughlett. “OSHA: Explosion, fire at Superior refinery could have been prevented.” Minneapolis Star Tribune, October 3, 2018.

April Explosion at Superior Refinery
If you have been injured in a fire or explosion, the law firm of Pritzker Hageman will help you put your life together again. 

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