Wife of survivor shares chilling details about Gulf oil rig explosion


by Courtney Zubowski / 11 News


Posted on April 28, 2010 at 5:39 PM

Updated Thursday, Apr 29 at 7:45 AM

ALICE, Texas -- The wife of a man who was on an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico when it exploded said her husband was on his knees praying to God he wouldn’t suffer.

“He said that people were actually just running around, yelling,” said Adriana Ramos.
Carlos Ramos is a roustabout for Transocean. He was on the main deck level of the Deepwater Horizon during the explosion on April 20.
The 25-year-old is still too shaken to talk about what happened, but his wife shared his story from their home in Alice, near Corpus Christi.
“He said that he saw people running around. It was so chaotic. There were some people on fire jumping overboard,” she said. “He said, between all the panic, he finally calmed down and he put his life vest on and started yelling at friends and co-workers to put their vest on and just to calm down. And he said he was just pushing men on the boat, just pushing men on the boat to save them.”
The oil rig worker’s wife says she doesn’t think he’ll be able to return to work. She prays that he will able to recover.
“He’s at home right now with our baby and even if there’s a loud noise or she drops something, a heavy toy, he gets startled. He’s just not the same person at all,” said Ramos.
A couple of lawsuits have already been filed against Transocean, the company that owns the vessel.  Carlos Ramos has retained an attorney.
“I think a lot of these guys are working people, they work very hard at their jobs, they know their job is dangerous, they’re working around heavy equipment, they are working in weather conditions that are terrible at times, hurricanes, tropical storms, cold, heat and they have to do a lot of heavy lifting every day, all day," said Houston attorney Matt Shaffer. "But I don’t think any of them expected to go through what occurred to them last week on this rig. I mean it was really hell on Earth."
Shaffer says he’s waiting to see if Transocean asks a federal court to limit the amount anyone would get from the company to what the oil rig is worth -- not before the accident, but right now. There is a provision in maritime law that would allow this.   
“I don’t think it is fair at all,” said Shaffer. “You’re talking about a rig that has a difference in value of perhaps half a billion dollars to after it runs and sinks to having scrap value."
A spokesperson for Transocean said he could not comment on pending litigation.
According to 11 News Legal Expert Gerald Treece, it’s unlikely a court would ever agree to a limitation of liability in this case.