LEA COUNTY, New Mexico (KOSA) – One person has been hospitalized following an incident at an oil well in Lea County.
According to the Lea County Sheriff’s Office, deputies were called to an industrial accident near Heidel Road and Whitmore Road around 10 a.m. Tuesday.
When deputies arrived, they found a man who had suffered burns to over 90% of his body. The victim was airlifted to a hospital in Lubbock.
An investigation revealed that a contractor was working to remove a wellhead from a plugged, abandoned oil well. The contractor was using a cutting torch to cut vents into the surface casing, which ignited paraffin. The sheriff’s office says this ignited residual gas inside of the well and caused a flashover.
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