“The bottom line is, this lack of insurance coverage is just consistent with the overall lack of responsibility we’ve seen from the fertilizer plant, starting from the fact that from day one they have yet to acknowledge responsibility,” Roberts said.
Roberts said he expects the plant’s owner to ask a judge to divide the $1 million in insurance money among the plaintiffs, several of whom he represents, and then file for bankruptcy.
He said he wasn’t surprised that the plant was carrying such a small policy. “It’s rare for Texas to require insurance for any kind of hazardous activity,” he said. “We have very little oversight of hazardous activities and even less regulation.”
I have long known that Texas is the execution capital of the world but didn’t know about its dismal lack of oversight until I read the above. For six years I was a sole-proprieter cabinet maker. I sold a few thousand dollars worth of furniture and cabinets each year; not enough to make a living on but it did supplement my pension. In that small non-hazardous (except maybe to me) business I carried a $1 million insurance policy. That is just standard in this part of the country.
When I learned that a large fertilizer plant near such a dense population carried no more than I did I was just astounded! How could oversight body have allowed this? They say there were no inspections of the plant in several years due to the lack of taxes to fund them. I’m sure that the hundreds of people who were killed or maimed or their families now regret allowing such disgraceful oversight by their government officials.