February 5, 2020 — Three men died of severe burn injuries after an uncontrolled release of natural gas caused an oil well explosion near Caldwell, Texas.
One contractor died immediately at the scene of the blowout. He was later identified as Windell Beddingfield, 38, of Tyler, Texas.
Two other men were airlifted to hospitals in Austin and Houston. Both men later died of severe burn injuries.
One victim was identified as Brian Maldonado, 25, of San Diego, Texas, who suffered 3rd-degree burns over 90% of his body.
The explosion occurred while a crew of 11 contractors for C.C. Forbes and Eagle Pressure Control were performing major maintenance operations on the oil well, which is owned by Chesapeake Energy.
Chesapeake reported the explosion at around 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, January 29, Wendl and Daniel H1H well in Burleson County. The well is located south of Caldwell along County Road 127.
Well blowouts are typically caused by an unexpected amount of natural gas and/or oil entering the well and igniting after a failure of the pressure control systems.
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