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Exxon halts activity at Texas oilfield site following worker fatality


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DENVER/HOUSTON — Exxon Mobil temporarily halted maintenance at an East Texas oil drilling facility after a fatality this week, which was at least the second death this year of a contractor at one of its Texas production sites.

The incident occurred on Tuesday near Hawkins, about 110 miles east of Dallas. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating, the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office said.

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The name of the worker, an employee of Axis Energy Services, was not immediately available. The death was ruled accidental, the sheriff’s office said in a Facebook post.

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Axis could not immediately be reached for comment.

“Our thoughts are with the family, friends and colleagues at this difficult time,” Meghan Macdonald, a spokesperson for XTO and ExxonMobil, said in a statement. She declined to comment further.

This year, Pamela Bleyl, 49, was killed in an incident at an Exxon shale oil production site in West Texas.

An employee of oilfield services provider Liberty Energy Inc, Bleyl was crushed between two pieces of equipment while working in Martin County, according to a negligence lawsuit filed in April in Harris County district court in Houston.

“We are very sorry this incident occurred, and we continue to express our deepest sympathy to Pamela’s family and friends,” Macdonald said, adding safety is a priority for the company and “the core value at all of our operations and facilities.” (Reporting by Liz Hampton in Denver and Sabrina Valle in Houston; Editing by Leslie Adler and Gerry Doyle)



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